Blue Jackets Assign Hannikainen, Korpisalo, Kukan to Monsters
Columbus also recalls goaltender Jeff Zatkoff prior to Cleveland’s Saturday home clash vs. Iowa.
The Cleveland Monsters, proud American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, announced Friday that the Blue Jackets assigned left wing Markus Hannikainen, goaltender Joonas Korpisalo, and defenseman Dean Kukan to the Monsters and recalled net-minder Jeff Zatkoff from his loan to Cleveland.
In 41 career NHL appearances for the Blue Jackets spanning three seasons from 2015-18, Hannikainen, 24, supplied 3-3-6 with 12 penalty minutes and a -3 rating. In 112 career AHL appearances, all for the Monsters, spanning three seasons from 2015-18, Hannikainen, a 6’1”, 200 lb., left-handed native of Helsinki, Finland, logged 26-33-59 with 42 penalty minutes and a +13 rating and notched 3-7-10 with two penalty minutes and a +12 rating in 16 appearances in the 2016 AHL Playoffs, helping the Monsters claim the 2016 Calder Cup Championship. In 117 career Liiga appearances for Jokerit, HPK, and JYP spanning parts of four seasons from 2011-15, Hannikainen tallied 22-31-53 with 67 penalty minutes and a +26 rating and represented Finland in the 2012 and 2013 IIHF U20 World Junior Championships, and the 2017 IIHF World Championships. This season, Hannikainen posted 2-2-4 with six penalty minutes and a-1 rating in 27 appearances for the Blue Jackets and added 0-2-2 with a +1 rating in five appearances for the Monsters.
Korpisalo, 23, has gone 5-4-0 with a 2.85 goals-against average and .912 save percentage in ten contests for Columbus this season and is 28-20-5 with a 2.71 goals-against average, .915 save percentage and a shutout in 55 career NHL games with the Blue Jackets. He has compiled a 2-2-1 record with a 1.79 goals-against average and .944 save percentage in five contests with Cleveland this season and is 17-18-6 with a 2.48 goals-against average, .913 save percentage and two shutouts in 42 career AHL games with the Monsters and Springfield Falcons spanning parts of four seasons from 2015-18. The native of Pori, Finland was selected by Columbus in the third round (62nd overall) in the 2012 NHL Draft.
A 6’2”, 196 lb. left-handed native of Volketswil, Switzerland, Kukan, 24, appeared in one game for Columbus this season, added 1-14-15 with 20 penalty minutes and a -3 rating in 31 appearances for Cleveland, and was named to the 2018 AHL All-Star Team. In nine career NHL appearances for the Blue Jackets during the 2015-16 and 2017-18 campaigns, Kukan posted a +9 rating and added 8-49-57 with 71 penalty minutes and a -7 rating in 136 AHL appearances for the Monsters spanning parts of three seasons from 2015-18. In the 2016 AHL Playoffs, Kukan contributed 1-4-5 with two penalty minutes and a +4 rating in 17 appearances for the Monsters, helping the team claim the Calder Cup. In 125 career SHL appearances for Luleå HF spanning parts of four seasons from 2011-15, Kukan logged 8-21-29 with 26 penalty minutes and a +19 rating and Kukan represented Switzerland in the 2012 and 2013 IIHF U20 World Junior Championships, and the 2014, 2015, and 2017 IIHF World Championships.
A 6’2”, 179 lb., left-handed native of Detroit, MI, Zatkoff, 30, was selected by the Kings in the third round (74th overall) of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. In parts of four NHL seasons with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Los Angeles from 2013-17, Zatkoff posted a record of 18-21-4 with one shutout, a 2.72 goals-against average, and a .908 save percentage and helped the Penguins claim the 2016 Stanley Cup. In 210 career AHL appearances for the Manchester Monarchs, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, and Ontario Reign spanning parts of eight seasons from 2008-18, Zatkoff accumulated a record of 99-82-7 with 17 shutouts, a 2.45 goals-against average, and a .915 save percentage. In 37 ECHL appearances for Ontario during the 2008-09 campaign, Zatkoff supplied a record of 17-15-3 with a 2.97 goals-against average and a .915 save percentage.
Prior to his professional career, Zatkoff registered a 54-22-7 record with seven shutouts, a 1.96 goals-against average, and a .927 save percentage in 92 NCAA appearances for Miami (OH) University spanning three seasons from 2005-08. During the 2004-05 season, Zatkoff went 13-6-3 with one shutout, a 2.55 goals-against average, and a .914 save percentage for the USHL’s Sioux City Musketeers. Zatkoff also helped Team USA claim the Bronze Medal at the 2007 IIHF U20 World Junior Championships. Zatkoff was acquired by the Blue Jackets via trade from the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings in exchange for future considerations on January 22nd and was subsequently assigned to the Monsters.
Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Saturday home tilt vs. the Iowa Wild with full coverage, live from The Q, underway at 7:00 pm on FOX Sports Ohio, Alt 99.1, and the Monsters Hockey Network.
Full and partial season ticket memberships are on sale now and provide you with the best seat locations, custom member benefits and the lowest ticket prices starting at only $10 per game. Group outing and birthday bash packages for 10 or more people are also on sale now. All tickets can be purchased by visiting ClevelandMonsters.com, calling (216) 420-0000, visiting The Q Box Office or any Northern Ohio Discount Drug Mart. Be sure to follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/monstershockey, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/monstershockey.