From the New York Islanders:
The New York Islanders announced today that Ville Pokka has agreed to terms on a three-year, entry-level contract.
Pokka, 19, scored 27 points (six goals, 21 assists) in 54 games with Karpat during his third full season in the Liiga (Finland). The Tornio, Finland, native was named one of three finalists for the top defenseman in the league. Pokka added 11 points (two goals, nine assists) in 16 playoff games to help lead Karpat to the 2014 Liiga Championship.
The Islanders drafted Pokka in the second round (34th overall) of the 2012 National Hockey League Draft. Pokka has 42 points (12 goals, 30 assists) in 138 career regular season games with Karpat.
On the international stage, Pokka represented Finland at the 2012, 2013 and 2014 World Junior Championships, winning gold in 2014. He also played for Team Finland at the 2011 and 2012 Under-18 World Championships and the 2011 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
My Take: The Islanders are the envy of the NHL in terms of young, talented defensive prospects. Pokka signing was just the icing on the cake. If/when he does get to North America, he’ll most likely start in Bridgeport to go along with the rest of the stud defenseman. If there was a reason to go see the Sound Tigers, this would be it. Coach Thompson will have a lot to work with and in a few years, the Isles won’t need to go to the free agent market to find themselves a defenceman.