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BLOG: Kuokkanen Eager for NHL Opportunity

Recalled on the weekend, Janne Kuokkanen had his first practice with the team on Monday

by Marc Ciampa / NewJerseyDevils.com

Devils forward Janne Kuokkanen was recalled from AHL Binghamton on the weekend and held practice with the team on Monday, skating on a line with Mike McLeod and Kevin Rooney. 

Video: DEVILS NOW | Welcome, Janne Kuokkanen

"It was good practice. High tempo," Kuokkanen said after practice. "There's a lot of players who helped me today. There's great guys and they're helping me a lot here."

Kuokkanen was acquired by the Devils several weeks ago at the NHL Trade Deadline as part of a trade in exchange for defenseman Sami Vatanen. He went from Charlotte to Binghamton in the AHL and has helped contribute to their six-game win streak with three goals and three assists for six points in four games. 

Video: RAW | Janne Kuokkanen

"It's been mentally, a new situation for me. I'm finally getting used to things," he said. "The team is rolling and the hockey is really fun. The team is good."

Devils interim head coach Alain Nasreddine wouldn't commit to any lineup changes for Tuesday, except noting that Freddie Claesson, who did not practice due to a lower-body injury, is day-to-day. He did say that he liked what he saw from Kuokkanen in practice, however.

"I thought he had a good practice. Juice was flowing for him and I noticed a pretty good reach, soft hands. It was good to have him out there."
 

 

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