International Ice Hockey Federation

Jalonen replaces Jortikka

Jalonen replaces Jortikka

Finnish U20 national team gets new coach

Published 20.01.2015 12:04 GMT+2 | Author Martin Merk
Jalonen replaces Jortikka
Jukka Jalonen led Finland to World Championship gold in 2011. Now he was signed to lead the U20 national team until the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship on home ice in Helsinki. Photo: Jukka Rautio / HHOF-IIHF Images
Jukka Jalonen, the former coach of the Finnish men’s national team, will lead the U20 national team to the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship on home ice.

He signed a contract starting in February and ending after the next World Juniors in Helsinki.

He will replace Hannu Jortikka, who resigned after the seventh-place finish at the 2015 World Juniors in Canada, behind the bench of the “Young Lions”.

The 52-year-old Jalonen was an assistant coach with the Finnish men’s national team at the 2008 IIHF World Championship and became the head coach after the tournament. He coached Finland at five IIHF Ice Hockey World Championships between 2009 and 2013 and at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games leading his country to gold at the 2011 World Championship – the second after 1995 for the country – and an Olympic bronze medal in Vancouver 2010.

Jalonen left the national team to coach KHL club SKA St. Petersburg where he was released in April 2014 after losing in the conference semi-finals.

After the short break from coaching, the batteries are recharged and Jalonen is thrilled about his new challenge.

“As a coach, the Young Lions and the World Juniors on home ice are an inspiring combination. It was an easy decision to say yes, when asked to take up the position,” Jalonen said.

“We’re thankful for the job Hannu did, but at the same time warmly welcome Jalonen back,” said Kalervo Kummola, the IIHF Vice President and Chairman of the Finnish Ice Hockey Association.


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