- 2018-02-10 at Tappara - Lukko, U20 by Asko Huuki
Saarela played for almost 16 minutes in 2-1 loss against Tappara. He didn’t record a single shot in this game and he lost majority of his face-offs.
Saarela is a fine skater with pretty good acceleration and above average top speed. However he has grown during the recent years and this why he still has frame to fill up. He is lightweight but he shows surprisingly lot of grit nevertheless. He is willing to go to the physical battle and he gave couple of heavy hits and knocked others off the puck couple of times. Saarela is pretty good at stickhandling but he carried the puck bit too much and instead of giving easy pass, he often tried to dangle his way through couple of opponents and these attempts weren’t successful.
While Saarela helped defense when it was necessary and his positioning was solid, he could play a lot more active checking game. He also seemed somewhat lazy to come back to defense when his team lost the puck in the offensive zone. However when he got the puck at the own end, he was calm and was able to give crisp and precise passes which allowed his team to advance from the own area. You can see his young age from his decision-making but I think his hockey sense is solid for a player of his age.
- 2016-12-28 at Finland - Slovakia, U16 by Marco Bombino
Saarela had a three-point game with one goal and two assists. His very quick and smooth skating stood out even more now that he played against players of his own age. His skating is easily above-average at this point in time. He has really good poise and quick hands, allowing to carry the tempo of the game. Showed strong decision making in possession. Has a quick slap shot with some serious power on it. Good work ethic and reliable defensive game.
Articles about Antti Saarela
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|2015-2016||Lukko U16||Jr. C SM-sarja Q||12||7||15||22||14||||
|Lukko U16||Jr. C SM-sarja||26||20||15||35||24|||||Playoffs||6||8||2||10||2|
|2016-2017||Lukko U16||Jr. C SM-sarja Q||1||3||1||4||0||||
|Lukko U18||Jr. B SM-sarja||34||5||15||20||40||||
|Finland U16 (all)||International-Jr||9||5||3||8||6||||
|2017-2018||Lukko U20||Jr. A SM-liiga||20||6||9||15||4||||
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