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Tuesday, 06.12.2007 / 12:34 PM ET / News
By Jason Lockhart  - Website/Publications Coordinator
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A weekly look at an Islanders' top prospect


Height: 6-4     
Weight: 207     
Shoots: Right
Born: October 5, 1987 – Pori, Finland  
2006-07 Team: Assat Pori (FIN)
Acquired: Islanders 2006 second-round draft pick (60th overall)


2006-07 Overview

The Finnish native made some personal strides in a disappointing season for Assat in Finland's SM-Liga. Despite Assat's failure to make the playoffs this season after reaching the postseason in 2005-06, Joensuu recorded career highs in goals (9), assists (17) and points (26). His 26 points were tied for fourth on the team.

At the 2007 World Junior Championship in Sweden, Joensuu's Finnish Team fell to the United States in their quarterfinal matchup by the score of 6-3. Joensuu scored Finland's first goal of the game, and finished the tournament with a goal and an assist in six games.

What They're Saying...

Islanders chief European scout Vellu-Pekka Kautonen:  "Jesse improved his game and increased his scoring from 12 to 26, which was positive. Jesse is a power forward who has a big body and is strong along the boards. He's poised with the puck and keeps his legs moving."


His pro career

After playing three seasons with Assat's junior team, Joensuu jumped to the pro level at the age of 17, making him one of the youngest players in the league. Each season he has improved his goal, assist and point totals with help from his increased ice time. In 2004-05, Joensuu was 1-1-2 in 39 games. The following year he jumped to 4-8-12 in 51 games before compiling his career highs this season.

Joensuu also has 29 games of international experience at World Junior Championships. He played on Finland's Under-18 Team for two tournaments, totaling 2-1-3 in ten games, and is 4-3-7 in 19 World Junior (Under-20) appearances. In 2006, Joensuu helped lead the Finns to a Bronze Medal at the World Juniors in Vancouver after compiling two goals and two assists in seven games. Joensuu scored Finland's fourth goal in their 4-2 victory over the United States in the Bronze Medal game.


What's Next?

Joensuu is expected to return to Finland to play in his fourth season with Assat. At 20, Joensuu's ice time should continue to increase as he takes on more responsibility. While the Islanders scouting staff likes his size and strength, they look forward to seeing him improve his skating ability.

"I believe he can reach 40 points next year," said Kautonen, "but that will only come if he improves his skating. He knows that his first step and his explosiveness need to get better for next season. He will be working a lot over the summer to improve that." PROJECTion

The Islanders' second-round pick in the 2006 draft has a lot of potential due to his size, and that's why he was chosen so early in the draft. He's still young and will see another year or two in the competitive SM-Liga in Finland before looking to sign with the Islanders and join the Sound Tigers.

If Joensuu can improve his skating enough, he'll have all tools to be an effective power forward. His summer workout program will be just as important to his development as his in-season performance with Assat.



  Regular Season Playoffs
Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2004-05 Assat Pori  FNL 39 1 1 2 4 -- -- -- -- --
2005-06 Assat Pori  FNL 51 4 8 12 57 14 0 2 2 12
2006-07 Assat Pori  FNL 52 9 17 26 74 -- -- -- -- --
TOTALS     142 15 26 40 135 14 0 2 2 12




J. Tavares 78 33 37 6 70
K. Okposo 79 22 42 -4 64
F. Nielsen 81 20 32 1 52
B. Nelson 81 26 14 -3 40
N. Leddy 81 5 35 -9 40
A. Lee 80 15 21 -2 36
J. Bailey 81 12 20 -7 32
C. Cizikas 80 8 21 4 29
R. Strome 71 8 20 -9 28
M. Grabovski 58 9 16 3 25
T. Greiss 23 11 4 .925 2.36
J. Halak 18 13 4 .919 2.30
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