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Isles break ice, take first goalie

Saturday, 06.27.2009 / 11:05 AM / 2009 NHL Entry Draft

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

MONTREAL -- After no goalies were selected in the first round of an Entry Draft for just the second time since 1992, it didn't take long for the first netminder to be selected Saturday.

With the first pick of the second round, the New York Islanders selected 6-foot-5, 187-pound Mikko Koskinen.

The 20-year-old goaltender has played the last two seasons with the Espoo Blues in the top Finnish league. In 33 games in 2008-09, he posted a 1.91 goals-against average and .931 save percentage.

"He had a really good season in the Finnish league with Espoo Blues," NHL Director of European Scouting Goran Stubb told NHL.com. "He started as the backup and in the beginning of November he took over as No. 1 goalie. He had a very steady season. Lot of teams nowadays like big goaltenders and he is big."

Koskinen said his size and maturity are his best attributes.

"I'm a big goalie, I play butterfly style," he told NHL.com. "I have good hockey sense, I can read the play well. I think the mental side is one of my best things, also."

While he said he has another season left on his contract with Espoo, he said he would like to play in North America next season.

"I want to come here to play in the NHL," said Koskinen. "I have contract there, but I know I can go there if the Islanders want that."

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com.