Jokerit Helsinki have finalised their roster for the upcoming 2014-2015 Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) by wrapping up the signing of forward Juhamatti Aaltonen, with GM Jari Kurri saying on Friday that he is pleased with the 34-man roster he has assembled.
On the other hand, the Hockey Hall of Famer revealed that Jokerit will keep the door ajar for Teemu Selänne amid rumours linking him with a return to his first professional club – rumours Selänne has yet to categorically quash.
"Teemu will make his own decision whether or not to continue his career, so the ball is entirely in his court. It is obvious that our door will always be open for Teemu, if he wants to continue playing," Kurri comments in a bulletin issued by Jokerit.
Ducks to retire Selänne's No. 8 jersey
Anaheim Ducks on Friday announced that it will honour the illustrious NHL career of Teemu Selänne by retiring the jersey of the Finnish hockey legend as the first jersey to be retired in the history of the franchise.
The number-eight jersey will be hoisted to the rafters of the Honda Centre on 11 January 2015, prior to a game against Winnipeg Jets, where Selänne began his NHL career in 1992 at the age of 22.
Kurri also insisted that Jokerit have managed to bolster their budget sufficiently to build a team that can compete in the KHL. "The team budget has been subject to a lot of speculation in the media, but I can now confirm that it is less than ten million euros," he told. Jokerit are set to begin their pre-season campaign this week. "We will look for different combinations and find working defensive pairings, forward lines and five-man units," Kurri revealed.
In addition, the roster will certainly prove helpful in the course of the 60-match KHL season. "We'll be on the road practically every other day. There will be travelling and time differences. We now have enough players to rotate if necessary," Kurri said.
Joska Saarinen – HS
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
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Image: Jussi Nukari / Lehtikuva