In his latest article for Sabres.com, Jourdan LaBarber introduces us to Buffalo Sabres prospect Oskari Laaksonen. The fact that he needs an introduction should come as no surprise because, until last month’s NHL Entry Draft, little was known about the 18 year-old Finnish defenseman. He wasn’t listed on any analysts pre-draft rankings and in fact wasn’t even included amongst the names produced by NHL Central Scouting. His hockeydb.com profile has no statistics and lists him at just 5’9” and 133 lbs.
In truth, Laaksonen stands about 6 feet tall and weighs somewhere in the neighborhood of 150 lbs. "I was like, oh God, I have to correct that one," said Laaksonen when addressing the media for the first time. "Obviously it's the biggest problem right now, the size and the strength, but I think it's coming."
Now that he’s finally being recognized, the skilled blue liner is simply happy to be in Buffalo as part of the Sabres’ Development Camp. His goal in 2017-18 is to crack to professional ranks in his native Finland and take a big stride towards one day playing in the NHL. While he has the tools to one day get there, Sabres fans will have to practice patience with the young blue liner.