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Mikko Rantanen
Mikko Rantanen.jpg
Born October 29, 1996 (1996-10-29) (age 22)
Nousiainen, Finland
Height 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Weight 230 lb (104 kg; 16 st 6 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
Colorado Avalanche
TPS
National team Template:Country data FIN
NHL Draft 10th overall, 2015
Colorado Avalanche
Playing career 2012-–present

Mikko Rantanen (born on October 29, 1996) is a Finnish professional ice hockey forward who is currently playing for the Colorado Avalanche of the National Hockey League (NHL).

He was selected in the first round (10th overall) by the Avalanche in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

Playing CareerEdit

Mikko made his professional Finnish SM-liiga debut as a 16-year-old playing with HC TPS during the 2012–13 season. He had played with TPS from a youth of 14-years old at the under-16 level. In 15 games he impressively scored 2 goals and 3 points.

Entering the 2014–15 season as the only 17-year-old to play in his third year with TPS, Mikko signed a two-year extension to remain with the Liiga outfit on October 9, 2014. Through using his big frame and physical play, he recorded career high 9 goals and 28 points in 56 games, also serving as an Alternate captain.

Mikko also featured for TPS junior club in the post-season recording 14 points in 7 contests to help capture the Championship and was given Best Player honors for his efforts.

In his NHL draft eligible year, he was subsequently rated as the top European skater at season's end. He was the first European based player selected when he was taken 10th overall by the Colorado Avalanche at the 2015 NHL Entry Draft on 26 June 2015.

On 13 July 2015, Mikko was signed to a three-year, entry-level contract with the Colorado Avalanche. After attending his first Avalanche training camp and impressing in the pre-season, he was announced to have made the opening night roster for the 2015–16 season as an 18-year old on 6 October 2015.

On October 8, 2015, Mikko made his NHL debut to open the season with the Avalanche in a 5-4 defeat to the Minnesota Wild. He was used in a depth role and played limited minutes over six scoreless games with Colorado before he was sent to AHL affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage on 22 October 2015.

In his AHL debut, Mikko contributed with his first goal and assist in North America during a 5-1 victory over the Stockton Heat on October 24, 2015. He continued his scoring pace with the Rampage, leading the club in all offensive categories before he was selected to the AHL All-Star Game as the second-youngest participant in the event's modern history.

After receiving a three-game recall to the Avalanche, he was returned to complete the season with San Antonio, becoming just the seventh teenager to reach the 60 point mark in 52 games.

In finishing 6th in overall scoring, Mikko earned a selection to the Second All-Star Team and shared the Dudley "Red" Garrett Memorial Award, alongside Frank Vatrano as the League's rookie of the year.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season and playoffsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2012–13 TPS Jr. A 35 10 14 24 14 9 2 4 6 4
2012–13 TPS SM-l 15 2 1 3 4
2013–14 TPS Jr. A 17 5 13 18 8 3 2 1 3 0
2013–14 TPS Liiga 37 5 4 9 10
2014–15 TPS Liiga 56 9 19 28 22
2014–15 TPS Jr. A 7 6 8 14 2
2015–16 Colorado Avalanche NHL 9 0 0 0 2
2015–16 San Antonio Rampage AHL 52 24 36 60 42
Liiga totals 108 16 24 40 36
NHL totals 9 0 0 0 2

InternationalEdit

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2013 Finland U17 7th 5 2 5 7 22
2013 Finland IH18 5th 4 3 4 7 0
2014 Finland WJC18 6th 5 3 2 5 0
2015 Finland WJC 7th 5 4 0 4 2
2016 Finland WJC Template:Goca 7 2 3 5 2
2016 Finland WC Template:Sica 5 0 1 1 2
Junior totals 26 14 14 28 26
Senior totals 5 0 1 1 2

International PlayEdit

Mikko was introduced and developed as a youth in the Finnish national junior under-16 program. He was first selected at an international tournament at the 2013 World U-17 Hockey Challenge, tallying 7 points in 5 contests.

He went on to lead the team at the under-18 level with 7 points in 4 games at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament before competing in his first full IIHF competition at the 2014 IIHF World U18 Championships.

Mikko continued his progression within the Finnish junior team in earning selection to the 2015 World Junior Championships in Toronto, Canada. Despite a disappointing seventh-place finish, he contributed with 4 goals in 5 games to earn a top 3 player on team selection.

During Mikko's first North American professional season and while eligible for his final junior tournament, he was loaned by the Colorado Avalanche to Captain the Finnish junior team as they hosted the 2016 World Junior Championships.

While adding a stabilising veteran presence, he played a supporting role throughout the round-robin stage before stepping up his production in the Semi-final against Sweden and scoring in the Final against Russia to help Finland claim the gold medal and cap his junior career.

AccoladesEdit

AHL

  • All-Star Game (2016)
  • All-Rookie Team (2016)
  • Dudley "Red" Garrett Memorial Award (2016)
  • Second All-Star Team (2016)