Lightning sign Joonas Huovinen from Polish champions

    The latest player to commit to the Smith Recycling Milton Keynes Lightning is Finnish centreman Joonas Huovinen, arriving from Polish league champions GKS Tychy.

    He learned the sport in his home country, making his senior debut in the country’s second highest league at the age of just 17. In the same season he represented Finland at U18 level. The following season he progressed to the country’s top tier, competing in 11 matches for Kärpät. 

    In the 2013 season at the age of just 19, Joonas was offered the chance to boost his career with a  contract in one of North America’s top junior leagues, the NAHL, competing for the Bismarck Bobcats and Twin City Steel.  This additional experience was accompanied by his continuing international selection when he was chosen to represent his country at U20 level.

    Returning from North America to his native Finland in 2014, Joonas once again found himself playing in the country’s top tier – this time with HC Ässät. He remained with the club for a season and a half before transferring to HC Hermes in the league below.

    Another development in Joonas’s career came in the season just ended, when he secured a contract with Asplöven HC in the Swedish first division, before the opportunity arose to sign for Tychy in the Polish top tier.  The club’s president praised the player for his speed, versatility and bravery.

    Lightning’s Head Coach, Doug McKay, is optimistic that Joonas can make a positive contribution to the team: “Joonas is a young player who I believe is capable of successfully stepping up to the British League. He has exciting potential and his attitude to developing and improving his game is second to none.  I know our supporters will enjoy seeing what he can do!”

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