NHL Rankings: 5 Western Conference Calder Candidates

By Matt Barbato
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Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; Mikko Rantanen puts on a team cap after being selected as the number ten overall pick to the Colorado Avalanche in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

3. Mikko Rantanen, Colorado Avalanche 

Rantanen is a big man, coming in at 6-foot-4, 211 pounds. He was ranked as the top European player in the draft by NHL.com and should be a handful for opposing goalies in front of the crease. The right wing played for TPS of the Finnish Elite League last season, scoring nine goals and tallying 19 assists. The right winger also represented Finland in the 2015 World Junior Championships and is only 18-years-old.

Size and strength are the keys to Rantanen’s game. Here’s what Stubb had to say about the Finnish prospect:

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“He’s a physically strong power forward with very good playmaking abilities; smart, active and involved on every shift. He has very good speed and quickness for a big man and plays with authority. He’s difficult to check, protects the puck well and has good hands.”

Rantanen’s playing style is compared to that of Ryan Getzlaf, which is something the Avalanche certainly could utilize in their top two lines.

Next: No. 2: Dylan Strome

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