August 14, 2011
The Littlest Hulk
When the Edmonton Oilers entered the NHL in 1979, they embraced players from Finland more so than other organizations. They had great success with Jari Kurri, and also with the likes of Matti Hagman and Risto Siltanen.
In the Oilers early days prior to Paul Coffey's emergence, it was Siltanen who assumed the offensive dman's role. One of the earlier European imports, Risto Siltanen was a very good offensive presence from the blue line. He was an excellent skater both in terms of speed and agility. He liked to rush the puck out of the zone, as his passing game was only average. He was a terrific stickhandler, though he could be pressured into holding the puck longer than he should have. He was reluctant to give up or dump the puck out of his zone without making a play.
Here's the full Risto Siltanen biography.
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