Coaches

Jukka Jalonen is the head coach of Jokerit for the 2016-18 seasons. His assistant coaches are Raimo Helminen and Mika Saarinen. Markus Ketterer is the goaltending coach and team leader, Janne Hietaniemi works as video coach.

Head coach: Jukka Jalonen, b. 2 November 1962, Riihimäki

Jukka Jalonen was appointed as Jokerit’s head coach for 2016-18 seasons. The experienced coach has led teams to gold medals in both IIHF World Championships and U20 World Championships as well as in the Finnish SM-liiga.

Jalonen has coached at top level in SM-liiga, Finnish national team and KHL. He was head coach of HPK Hämeenlinna when the team won the Finnish league title in 2005-06. He also won four bronze medals with HPK in 2002, -03, -05 and -07.

Jalonen continued his career as head coach of the Finnish national team through the 2008-13 seasons. He led the Finnish Lions to the IIHF World Championships gold medal in 2011 and Olympic bronze the year before in Vancouver. As an assistant coach, Jalonen won bronze in the IIHF World Championships in 2008.

Jalonen’s latest club coaching job was with SKA St. Petersburg of the KHL. Jalonen was named head coach of the KHL giants during the 2012-13 season and he worked for the club through the 2013-14 season as well. He led SKA to the Western Conference finals in the first year and semifinals in the second.

Before coming to Jokerit, Jalonen was as head coach of Finnish U20 national team during the season 2015-16. Under his command, Finland won gold at Hartwall Arena in the U20 World Championships. It was the fourth gold for Finland in the tournament’s history.

Assistant coach: Raimo Helminen, b. March 11th 1964, Tampere

Helminen worked as an assistant coach for Ari-Pekka Selin in Barys Astana of the KHL in the 2013-14 season. It proved to be the best season ever for the Kazakh club which finished in the top spot of the Chernyshev division, but was eliminated in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

Helminen returned to Barys as an assistant coach in the 2015-16 season, but his stay was cut short after a coaching staff change in September. After that, Helminen worked in Dinamo Riga with head coach Kari Heikkilä.

In addition to working for KHL teams, Helminen has also been both assistant and head coach in Finnish U20 national teams. He has international experience also on the senior level when he worked with Selin with Kazakhstan’s national team in the IIHF World Championships in 2014. In the Finnish SM-liiga, Helminen has worked as both head and assistant coach of Ilves Tampere.

Helminen is one of the best players in Finnish hockey history. The center represented Finland in in 331 games, which continues to be a world record in ice hockey. Helminen and Teemu Selänne are the only ice hockey players to have played in six Olympics. Helminen brought home a silver from Calgary in 1988 and bronze medals from Lillehammer 1994 and Nagano 1998. In IIHF World Championships, Helminen won one gold, four silvers and one bronze medal.

At the club level, Helminen played for Ilves Tampere and was the Finnish SM-liiga champion in the spring of 1985. In Malmö, Sweden, Helminen won the Swedish title twice and he also played in the NHL for three seasons with the New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars and New York Islanders.

Assistant coach: Mika Saarinen, b. 12 June 1966, Lahti

Saarinen arrived at Jokerit for the 2016-17 season. He’s worked at the top of Finnish ice hockey for over 20 years in both national teams and at the club level.

Saarinen was a video coach for the national team between 1992 and 2002. During this time, Finland won IIHF World Championships gold in 1995, silver in 1994, -98, -99 and 2001 and bronze in 2000. In the Olympics, the Finns achieved bronze in Lillehammer 1994 and Nagano in 1998.

Saarinen was named assistant coach of JYP Jyväskylä of the Finnish SM-liiga for the 1995-96 season and he spent three years at the position before being named head coach for the 1998-99 campaign. Saarinen was head coach of JYP until 2002.

After his years in Jyväskylä, Saarinen took on the job as Finland’s U18 head coach. From there, he moved to coach Tappara Tampere of the Finnish SM-liiga and was there until the 2004-05 season.

In 2007-08, Saarinen worked as assistant coach for Lukko Rauma and continued working as assistant coach for the U20 national team the following year. Before joining Jokerit, Saarinen worked for Pelicans Lahti of the Finnish league. He was general manager at the club as well as assistant coach and head coach of the U20 team.

Goaltending coach and team leader: Markus Ketterer, b. 23 October 1967, Helsinki

Markus Ketterer returned to Jokerit Finnish SM-liiga coaching staff for the 2011-12 season after a break of 9 years. Ketterer is both the Goaltending Coach and Team Manager.

The former top goaltender had a successful career as a player. Raised in Jokerit, he broke through the junior ranks to the senior team early and played one season of Finnish Championship Series divisional hockey before making a move to TPS. After three seasons and three Finnish SM-liiga championships Ketterer returned to play for Jokerit for 1991-92 and continued his winning streak by picking up a fourth Finnish SM-liiga title in a row.  He continued for another season at Jokerit before moving to the Buffalo Sabres organization. 

After two seasons in AHL, Ketterer played two seasons in Färjestad, where he won the Swedish Championship in 1997. He returned to Jokerit in 1997-98 to share the goaltending responsibilities with Ari Sulander. Ketterer ended his career as a player after one more year with Jokerit.

Ketterer played a long and successful career in Finnish national teams. In IIHF Ice Hockey U20 World Championships, he took gold. For the Finnish national team, he played 108 games, 4 times in IIHF Ice Hockey  World Championships and once in the Olympics, Canada Cup and World Cup. He was the first-choice goaltender winning the first World Championships medal (silver) for Finland in Prague in 1992.

After his career as a player, Ketterer was the Goaltending Coach for Jokerit in 1999-2002. During this time, he was a part of the Finnish SM-liiga championship winning team. He has continued working with Jokerit junior teams, leading training sessions for the young goaltenders. Ketterer was appointed as a member of the Jokerit Junior Coaching Lead Committee, where he is still active.

Video coach and statistics: Janne Hietaniemi, b. 16 January 1988, Helsinki

Janne joined Jokerit's KHL team as video and statistics coach after serving as coach with the club's U18 team during season 2016-17. He also has coaching experience while working while working for Mestis side SaPKo in a coaching staff lead by Pekka Tirkkonen.

As a junior player, Janne played a number of years for Jokerit up until the U20 team. He won a Finnish U18 league bronze medal with Jokerit in 2006.

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