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    HanaaHC joins the Kiekko-Espoo organization!


    Hockey in the southern parts of Finland has long roots and fans are used to seeing success with the big clubs such as HIFK and Jokerit, but the teams in the surrounding areas such as Vantaa and Espoo have been doing tremendous work growing the sport and expanding into new areas which can be proven by Kiekko-Vantaa getting into esports now being followed by Kiekko-Espoo partnering with ECL Pro powerhouse HanaaHC. Game Cave Espoo will be providing the esports team with top-of-the-line facilities and equipment to realize their full potential.


    Kiekko-Espoo is especially known for promoting growth in Finnish junior hockey and being the club where hockey legends such as Jere Lehtinen and Juha Ylönen among others took their first strides at the professional level. Since then, the history of the club has been somewhat turbulent as they spent several years with the name Espoon Blues, but the teams was eventually defunct in 2016 due to financial issues. 2018 saw the return of Kiekko-Espoo to fill the void at the mens level of hockey in the Espoo area and the teams secured a spot in the Mestis (second tier of hockey) for the 2020-2021 season. 

    "We'll be taking this one step at a time but believe that a sustainable partnership could develop into great things for both parties. Together with the esports team, we'll generate added value to the entire Kiekko-Espoo organization. We believe in the growth of esports and want to be a part of it." - Antti Manninen, COO of Kiekko-Espoo Oy.


    After good efforts in ECL 10 Pro, but a tough FCL stint, the Kiekko-Espoo esports roster is now set on seeing the success that they believe they are capable of achieving. NHLGamer reached out to captain Jere @Hazard-laser Korte for some insight: 

    ECL 10 Pro was a good run, but you struggled at times too - what are some things you've changed or put time into during the offseason?
    "Firstly, we were forced to make some changes to the LW position since Mikael @Mikka Alaheikka started his military service, but Toni @Borjendahlen Karjaluoto has been a great addition to our squad. We also acquired Tomi @tominointi Mäkelä from Enigma. Last season was our first run in the Pro division and I believe the experience has made us a better team. We've practiced hard and believe in ourselves."

    What's the story behind partnering with Kiekko-Espoo in particular?
    "When looking for organizations to partner with, we wanted to find a partner that shared our ambition and values. Kiekko-Espoo is an organization with heavy focus on development and we're really happy with how they handle their business."

    What are your goals in your first season representing Kiekko-Espoo?
    "I can't say enough how glad we are to represent Kiekko-Espoo. It will give us a great boost going forward that we hope we can turn into momentum this season. Our roster has seen some changes and we believe that we have to keep working hard in order to reach our final goal - a promotion spot."

    Kiekko-Espoo Esports can be seen in action in group 1 of the ECL 11 Pro, that starts already tonight! Follow the team on social media in order to stay up to date with their schedule.




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