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Blues
City Espoo, Finland
League SM-liiga
Founded 1984 (1984)
Home arena Barona Areena (capacity 7,036)
Colors               
Head coach Petri Matikainen
Captain Toni Kähkönen

Website
http://www.blues.fi/
Franchise history
1984 - 1998 Kiekko-Espoo
1998 - present Blues

The Blues are an ice hockey team in the SM-liiga. They play in Espoo, Finland at the Barona Areena.

Contents

Team History

The club was established in February 1984 as Kiekko-Espoo and played their first season in 1984-1985 in the Finnish Second Division. In 1988 they achieved promotion to the Finnish First Division and in 1992 celebrated their promotion to the SM-liiga by beating Joensuun Kiekkopojat with wins 3-2 in best-of-five-series.

Kiekko-Espoo ended its first two seasons in SM-liiga in 11th place within 12 teams. In 1994-95 season team made playoffs for the first time, losing to Lukko in quarter-finals. In 1997-98 season Kiekko-Espoo caused huge upset by beating regular season winner TPS in quarter-finals. Kiekko-Espoo ended the season in fourth place. In the next summer, team name was changed. The name came from the dominant colour of their home jersey.

During the 1998-99 season, team moved to its current home, LänsiAuto Areena (renamed in 2009 due to sponsorship change). The first seasons in their new home were difficult despite team signing many big names. Blues missed the playoffs in 2001 and 2005. In 2002-03 season Blues had its best regular season until that day with fourth place, only to lose against eventual champions Tappara in overtime of the seventh quarter-final.

The team took step forward in 2006-07 when they reached the semi-finals for the first time in nine years, although they lost against Kärpät straight in three games and bronze medal game against HPK. During 2007-08 Blues set a new team record by winning 12 games in a row. They finally ended the regular season in 2nd place and beat HIFK in quarter-finals and Jokerit in semi-finals, proceeding to the finals and thus ensuring the first medal in franchise history. The team eventually ended up second after losing the finals to Kärpät.

Roster for 2009-10 season

Goaltenders
Number Player Catches Contract Length Place of Birth
32 Finland Mikko Tolvanen L 2011 Vantaa, Finland
35 Finland Iiro Tarkki R 2011 Rauma, Finland
Defencemen
Number Player Shoots Contract Length Place of Birth
3 Finland Santeri Heiskanen R 2011 Helsinki, Finland
4 Finland Aleksi Laakso L 2011 Seinäjoki, Finland
5 Finland Miika Huczkowski L 2010 Jyväskylä Municipality, Finland
6 Finland Mikael Kurki L 2010 Helsinki, Finland
7 Finland Ari Gröndahl R 2011 Helsinki, Finland
8 Finland Joonas Rönnberg L 2010 Vantaa, Finland
16 Finland Kristian Näkyvä L 2011 Helsinki, Finland
22 Finland Rami Alanko R 2011 Helsinki, Finland
25 Slovakia Branislav Mezei L 2010 Nitra, Czechoslovakia
30 Finland Petri Kokko L 2011 Oulu, Finland
47 Finland Ville Lajunen R 2010 Helsinki, Finland
Forwards
Number Player Shoots Position Contract Length Place of Birth
13 Finland Toni Häppölä L F 2009 Helsinki, Finland
14 Finland Petri Lammassaari R W 2010 Eurajoki, Finland
15 Finland Patrik Lostedt L W 2010 Helsinki, Finland
17 Finland Juuso Puustinen R W 2010 Kuopio, Finland
18 Finland Erkki Rajamäki L RW 2009 Vantaa, Finland
23 Finland Jarkko Immonen L C 2011 Espoo, Finland
24 Finland Jani Lajunen L F 2011 Espoo, Finland
27 Finland Roope Ranta R F 2010 Helsinki, Finland
28 Finland Tomi Ståhlhammar L F 2010 Turku, Finland
29 Finland Joonas Nättinen R C 2011 Jämsä, Finland
40 Finland Jaakko Uhlbäck L LW 2010 Kuopio, Finland
41 Finland Stefan Öhman L C 2011 Örnsköldsvik, Sweden
52 Finland Camilo Miettinen L F 2010 Medellín, Colombia
57 Finland Tomi Sallinen L F 2010 Espoo, Finland
71 Finland Sami Blomqvist L F 2010 Örnsköldsvik, Sweden
77 Slovakia Gabriel Spilar R W 2010 Prague, Czechoslovakia
80 Finland Jere Sallinen L F 2010 Espoo, Finland
85 Finland Toni Kähkönen L F 2010 Espoo, Finland

Team Captains (SM-liiga)

15 players have been named Captain of the team.

Head coaches (SM-liiga)

The Blues have had 18 head coaches since the teams inception.

  • Martti Merra (1992-94, replaced in January)
  • Hannu Saintula (1994, mid-season replacement)
  • Harri Rindell (1994-96)
  • Håkan Nygren (1996-98, replaced in February)
  • Hannu Saintula (1998, mid-season replacement)
  • Pekka Rautakallio (1998, replaced in November)
  • Hannu Saintula (1998-99, mid-season replacement)
  • Jukka Holtari (1999-2000, replaced in January)
  • Jari Härkälä (2000, mid-season replacement)
  • Timo Tuomi (2000-01, replaced in September of second season)
  • Hannu Kapanen (2001-03, mid-season replacement, continued in the next season)
  • Ted Sator (2003, replaced in October)
  • Hannu Virta (2003-04, mid-season replacement, replaced in the October of second season)
  • Pekka Rautakallio (2004-05)
  • Kari Heikkilä (2005-07)
  • Petri Matikainen (2007 to date)

Retired Numbers

  • 33 – Timo Hirvonen
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