Ville Pokka
Image: Karpat

Ville Pokka

Hometown:

Tornio Finland

Currently Playing In:

Pro

Birthday:

1994-06-03

Position:

D

Eligible for draft:

2012

Shoots:

Right

Drafted:

2012

Height:

6-0

Acquired:

Trade with New York Islanders, 2014

Weight:

198 lbs.

Probability of Success
  • C

History

2009-10: Ville Pokka skated for Karpat Oulu’s U18 and U16 clubs and was an assistant captain for Finland’s U16 team. He played 20 games for Karpat U18 and had 5 assists with 10 penalty minutes. After finishing third, Karpat lost to Espoo Blues in a five-game playoff series. Pokka played in all five games and was scoreless with 4 penalty minutes. In nine games with Karpat U16 he scored 5 goals with 9 assists. He played in two of the three games in the playoff series with Jokerit and had assists on two of Karpat’s four goals.  In 16 games with Finland’s U16 team he had 4 goals with 11 assists.

2010-11: Pokka made his SM-Liiga debut, appearing in two games with Karpat, and skated in three games for Kiekko-Laser in Mestis (Finland’s second league). He was the leading scorer amongst defensemen for Karpat’s U20 team and represented Finland in international play at the 2011 U17 World Hockey Challenge and U18 World Junior Championship tournaments. Pokka was minus-two with 2 penalty minutes averaging 6 minutes of ice time in his brief SM-Liiga experience. He had three assists for Kiekko-Laser. In 32 games for Karpat’s junior team he scored 6 goals with 15 assists and was plus-four on a team that finished 12th in the 15-team SM U20 league. In one relegation game he had an assist. Pokka was part of Karpat’s bronze medal-winning U18 team and had 9 assists in 12 games (including nine playoff contests). He had 1 goal with 4 penalty minutes in five games for Finland at the U17 WHC and was scoreless and minus-two in six games as Finland finished fifth at the U18 WJC.

2011-12: Pokka skated in 35 games for Karpat in his first full season in Finland’s SM-Liiga and played for Finland at the 2012 U20 and U18 World Junior Championship tournaments. He had 3 assists and was minus-three with 12 penalty minutes for Karpat while averaging almost 19 minutes of ice time. After finishing seventh in the regular season, the Oulu club took second-place Pelicans to a decisive seventh game in the playoff quarterfinals. Pokka skated in all nine playoff games and was plus-one with 3 assists. One of two defensemen to play in both the U20 and U18 tournaments for Finland (2013 draft-eligible Rasmus Ristolainen was the other), Pokka played a huge role for Finland at the U20 tournament when highly-touted Olli Maatta was injured in the first game and could not play. In seven games Pokka scored 1 goal with 3 assists and was plus-three with 4 penalty minutes. In seven games at the U18 tournament, Pokka had 1 goal with 5 assists and was plus-two with 4 penalty minutes. In both tournaments, Finland lost to Canada in the bronze medal game. Pokka was invited to the NHL Draft Combine and ranked seventh amongst European skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings prior to the 2012 NHL Draft.

2012-13: Pokka skated in 47 games for Karpat in his second SM-Liiga season and represented Finland in the 2013 World Junior Championship. Pokka tied veteran Mikko Lehtonen with 6 goals to lead Karpat defensemen and also had 6 assists; finishing +2 with 8 penalty minutes. Karpat finished seventh and lost to Lukko Rauma in a three-game preliminary series. Pokka had 2 assists with an even plus/minus against Lukko. In six games at the WJC he scored 2 goals with 4 assists and was a team-leading +10 with 2 penalty minutes. Finland finished seventh after winning two games in the relegation round.

 2013-14: Pokka won two championships during the season — skating for Liiga champion Karpat Oulu and playing for the gold medal-winning Finland U20 team at the 2014 World Juniors. Pokka was a workhorse for Karpat, averaging 21:50 minutes of ice time in 54 regular season games. He scored 6 goals with 21 assists and was plus-32 with 16 penalty minutes. Karpat rolled through the playoffs after finishing first in the regular season. Pokka scored 2 goals with 9 assists in 16 playoff games and was plus-7 with 10 penalty minutes. Finland’s defense corps was a big part of the gold medal effort as all contributed offensively. In seven games Pokka scored 1 goal with 3 assists and was plus-7 with 4 penalty minutes. Pokka signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Islanders in May 2014. 

Future

Pokka attended training camp with the Islanders before being acquired by Chicago in October as part of a multi-player trade. Pokka has begun his first season in North America with Chicago AHL affiliate Rockford but both he and fellow Finland U20 teammate Teuvo Teravainen could be among the first call-ups in 2014-15. Long-term Pokka projects to being the type of strong skating, persistent defender who can also contribute to the attack.

 

Gillies leads small but impressive group of NHL-drafted goaltenders from the NCAA

by DJ Powers
on

Jon Gillies - Providence College

Photo: Providence College has maintained a presence in the top 15 of the NCAA Hockey rankings, with goaltender and Calgary Flames prospect Jon Gillies playing a big part in the team’s success in 2014-15 (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

 

Fifteen NHL-drafted goaltenders are playing in the NCAA this season. Hockey’s Future takes a closer at the top five, all of whom are among the nominees for this year’s Mike Richter Award that was recently announced. This ranking is based on season performance, overall developmental progress and NHL potential. Unless otherwise noted, all stats are current as of Feb. 28th. Read more»

On the Rush, February 2015

by HF Staff
on

Photo: Dylan Sadowy was taken in the third round (81st overall) of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft by the San Jose Sharks (CHL Images)

Photo: Dylan Sadowy was taken in the third round (81st overall) of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft by the San Jose Sharks (Courtesy of CHL Images)

 

Welcome to the February edition of On the Rush. It is getting down to crunch time, and soon the playoffs will commence for the players who have managed to advance. In hockey, momentum can be as much of a deciding factor in the postseason as seed order. This month, Hockey’s Future will have a league-by-league look at who is hot, and who is not—as we head into every hockey fan’s favorite time of the year. Read more»

(Video) First NHL Goal: Spooner’s OT goal gives Bruins much-needed points

by Ken McKenna
on

Ryan Spooner - Boston Bruins

Photo: Boston Bruins forward Ryan Spooner was third in scoring for the Providence Bruins at the time he was called up to Boston, scoring eight goals and adding 18 assists in 33 AHL games (courtesy of Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)

 

It was impeccable timing for the first NHL goal of Boston Bruins‘ forward Ryan Spooner‘s career as his milestone goal came in overtime to give the Bruins a 3-2 win over the New Jersey Devils. Read more»

Tampa Bay Lightning prospects run deep at every position

by Chris Roberts
on

Photo: Anthony DeAngelo leads all CHL defencemen with 71 points in 51 games this season. (Courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

Photo: Anthony DeAngelo leads all CHL defencemen with 71 points in 51 games this season. (Courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

 

Owning quality NHL-bound prospects at all five positions, the Tampa Bay Lightning appear to be set for the future. Beyond top prospects Jonathan Drouin, Andrey Vasilevskiy and Anthony DeAngelo, many of the organization’s prospects are ready for the next level, with recent call-ups Luke Witkowski and Nikita Nesterov performing well in the NHL. Read more»

Paterson emerges as top NHL-drafted goaltender in OHL in 2014-15

by Jason Menard
on

Jake Paterson - Kitchener Rangers

Photo: Kitchener Rangers goaltender and Detroit Red Wings prospect Jake Paterson has the Rangers in a playoff position after being dealt to the club at the OHL trade deadline by the Saginaw Spirit (courtesy of Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

 

It’s not a deep pool, but when it comes to NHL-drafted goaltenders in the OHL, quantity takes a back seat to quality.

The OHL is graced by two elite netminders atop the rankings, another one knocking on that lofty door, one middling prospect, and a potentially quality prospect who, unfortunately, has to take an incomplete grade due to an injury. Read more»

Related Articles