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2008-09: What had started as a very exciting season which would seal his spot as a high round NHL draft pick ended prematurely when he injured his knee. He had a solid showing in the Fall playing for Team Finland at the Ivan Hlinka tournament and then started well with Jokerit before the injury ended his season after just seventeen games. The injury was a key blow not only to Jokerit’s A Junior prospects but to those of Team Finland at the World Junior Championships as well. A key member of the squad, Manelius’ absence was a key factor in the disappointing finish which saw the Finns forced to beat Germany to avoid relegation out of the top division.
Manelius has been one of the most consistent defenders among Finnish defensemen since his early junior days. A serious knee injury ended his season after seventeen games and has thus affected his status as a can’t-miss prospect. If healthy, he is strong in his own end with a keen ability to start the transition from defense to offense and the willingness to play a physical yet disciplined style. While rarely risky or out of position to create scoring opportunities, he supports the attack with crisp passes and by getting into open spaces. He is signed with Jokerit for this upcoming season, and if healthy, may be re-united with long-time partner Tommi Kivisto, who spent the 2008-29 season in Red Deer (WHL).