Flyers trade into fourth round, select athletic center Heikki Ruohonen

Heikki Ruohonen saw his draft rise late in the season and will learning how to translate his game to North America next season.
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Rounds 2-7
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Rounds 2-7 / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

Center continues to be a position of need for the Flyers. After trading up for a defenseman in the second round, Danny Briere moved into the fourth round to add another center. In moving up to 107, Philadelphia traded picks 150 and 177 to the Calgary Flames.

With their new pick, the Flyers drafted Heikki Ruohonen out of Finland. Aside from wanting to add more center depth, Philadelphia is looking at size as well. Ruohonen stands over six feet tall and is nearly 200 pounds.

Ruohonen put up a rather strong season for Kiekko-Espoo’s U20 team. He was top on the team in goals (20) and points (47). The 18-year-old will be bringing his game to North America, heading to the Dubuque Fighting Saints in the USHL. He was taken by them with the number one selection in the USHL Draft.

Flyers add athletic two-way center in Ruohonen 

The Flyers must’ve taken major stock into the U18 World Juniors. All of their draft picks to this point saw their stocks rise at the tournament. Ruohonen was another example of that. For Finland, he had three goals and five points in five games. He was named as one of the top three players on the Finland squad.

Ruohonen is another forward who shows a strong hockey sense and uses his physicality to win board battles. He is dangerous in the offensive zone, though he can struggle in getting shots off if put into a tough position. Still, he put up the most points per game by a first-time draft-eligible u-20 SM-Sarja regular. That is nothing to look past.

With a strong hockey IQ, it wouldn’t be shocking to see Ruohonen put all of the pieces together as he translates to the North American style of play. He is committed to Harvard University for the 2026-27 season so it could be quite some time before we see him in Philadelphia.