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Winnipeg Jets prospect Kristian Vesalainen returning to Moose after KHL stint

Kristian Vesalainen’s season will continue as he returns to North America after a stint in the KHL.

Jets prospect Kristian Vesalainen (2017 1st round 24th overall) played five games with the Winnipeg Jets in his first pro season in North America earlier this season as well as eight games with the Manitoba Moose of the AHL before exercising a clause in his contract which allowed him to return to Finland to play with Jokerit in his hometown of Helsinki.  In 31 games for Jokerit this season he had six goals and 11 assists in 31 games.  Now that his team has been bounced from the KHL playoffs the winger is returning to North America to continue his season.

If Vesalainen plays more than nine games with the Jets this season, it would burn the first year of his contract. Playoff games count toward that total but AHL games to do not.  In addition to not wanting to burn a year of his entry-level contract the Jets have to be cognizant of the NHL expansion draft for Seattle and this will ensure he is one less player they would have to protect.  All of which is why the Jets have assigned him to the Manitoba Moose this morning.

Kristian Vesalainen smiling

Photo Credit: Colby Spence

Manitoba is set to play Texas tonight and Vesalainen will not play this evening but he could see some action when the team wraps up this six-game homestand against the San Diego Gulls on Sunday or Tuesday.

Update:  I spoke to Moose head coach Pascal Vincent today following morning skate about the return of Vesalainen to his squad.

Coach Vincent

As always stay tuned for the latest Winnipeg Jets and Manitoba Moose news by keeping it locked to our web site and on social media including Twitter | Facebook | Instagram.  You can also follow me on twitter as well (@icdave).

After a day off today the Jets are all back on the ice tomorrow.

Some players will be taking part in the first home pre-season game against the Senators while there are two skate times for the non-game groups.

We will have it all covered on

Can only keep a Winnipegger away from Manitoba for so long before the pull to come home gets you.

John Lu will be back in Winnipeg and will provide excellent coverage of the Jets for TSN.

What are your initial thoughts on this hire?

John Lu of TSN will be returning to Winnipeg to take over covering Winnipeg Jets from Sara Orlesky

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