Malinen is a fantastic, all-directions skater who can utilize his inside and outside edges to quickly pivot in transition and build speed with his crossovers. His ability to play with smoothness and fluidity allows him to control gaps with ease while defending in transition. He shows a quick and active stick to poke pucks away…
|Apr 19/21||Malinen Aleksi||21968 – Jukurit vs. JYP||LIIGA||by Brandon Holmes||View Report|
|Mar 4/21||Malinen Aleksi||21759 – Pelicans vs. JYP||LIIGA||by Derek Neumeier||View Report|
|Jan 25/21||Malinen Aleksi||21622 – SaiPa vs. JYP||LIIGA||by Ray Napientek||View Report|
Malinen is a fantastic, all-directions skater who can utilize his inside and outside edges to quickly pivot in transition and build speed with his crossovers. His ability to play with smoothness and fluidity allows him to control gaps with ease while defending in transition. He shows a quick and active stick to poke pucks away and regain possession for his team. He’s assertive with his decision-making, making calculated risks to pinch up in the neutral and offensive zones to help his team maintain or regain possession. His gap control against the rush looks good. He knows to check over his shoulders to calculate the play around him. He shows a lot of confidence with his exits and entries, including times where he goes end-to-end. He has the ability to draw penalties while driving wide around opponents with his speed. He can work a little magic at the offensive blue line, making moves to create space and shake off defending forwards. His hands are good, albeit not an outstanding trait. He can receive difficult passes and make quick little moves to settle the puck down, and he can also sometimes maneuver the puck through sticks and skates or quickly chip it into space for himself. However, his success rate with these moves could be better. He also doesn’t have the strength to fight through checks with his carries, at least not yet. His decision-making in all zones needs to improve, but all indications show that it will because of how focused and alert he is. Though Malinen shows upside in his tools as a two-way defenseman, he tends to panic under pressure while being chased by opposing forecheckers, tending to throw the puck away rather than staying composed and finding teammates in open passing lanes, which led to defensive zone turnovers on a few occasions. Malinen is capable of sending smooth breakout passes to his forwards to get out of the zone, though there were instances as well of him going off the glass in the same scenarios which surrendered possession of the puck. Overall, Malinen will need to work on his overall poise in his own zone while handling the puck, but the young defenseman shows the ability in his skating and gap control that could lend itself nicely towards being a reliable two-way puck-mover down the road.