TPS Turku’s pricey Canadian legionnaire COREY LOCKE (84), the 28-year-old center who skated in just nine National Hockey League contests (0 go, 1 as) for the Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators over the course of eight years as a professional in the North American ranks, reportedly had the distinct honor of being the player with the highest annual salary in the entire Finnish elite league until his very recent transfer to defending Deutsche Eishockey Liga champions Eisbaeren Berlin in Germany; the diminutive Locke, who missed more than half of last season with the Binghamton Senators in the American Hockey League on account of injury, had a sensational 2010/11 campaign for Binghamton and won both the AHL scoring title as well as the AHL Most Valuable Player award that year.
According to a report published by the Finnish sports magazine “VEIKKAAJA” at the beginning of this 2012/13 ice hockey campaign, the list of the highest paid players in the entire SM-LIIGA this season would comprise of the following :
330,000 Euro – $ 438,040 … 28 – c, Corey LOCKE (Can), TPS Turku
300,000 Euro – $ 398,220 … 27 – c, Stephen DIXON (Can), Assat Pori
280,000 Euro – $ 371,670 … 37 – c, Eric PERRIN (Can), JYP Jyvaskyla
280,000 Euro – $ 371,670 … 39 – lw, Ville PELTONEN, IFK Helsinki
280,000 Euro – $ 371,670 … 32 – d, Ossi VAANANEN, Jokerit Helsinki
270,000 Euro – $ 358,400 … 31 – c, Ilari FILPPULA, Jokerit Helsinki
260,000 Euro – $ 345,125 … 31 – g, Johan BACKLUND (Swe), Karpat Oulu
250,000 Euro – $ 331,850 … 32 – c, Riku HAHL, Jokerit Helsinki
250,000 Euro – $ 331,850 … 37 – lw, Jarkko RUUTU, Jokerit Helsinki
240,000 Euro – $ 318,575 … 35 – g, Petri VEHANEN, Lukko Rauma
(Note — conversion rates from Euros into U.S. dollars are rounded off and as of January 14, 2013)
Jokerit Helsinki center ILARI FILPPULA, the 31-year-old whose younger brother, Valterri, is an experienced veteran earning a reported $ 3.0 million U.S. dollars with the Detroit Red Wings in the National Hockey League this term, is currently the leading scorer in the crack SM-liiga with 47 points this season. Assat Pori’s productive legionnaire STEPHEN DIXON, the 27-year-old center who appeared with the national select side of Canada for the 2012 Deutschland Cup earlier this past fall, is one of three players tied for second in the Finnish elite league with 42 points this term. Dixon, who skated three years in the American Hockey League (240 ga, 46 go, 115 pts) with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Penguins and Portland Pirates before signing with Swedish Elitserien club IF Brynas Galve in the summer of 2008, also leads the SM-liiga with 33 assists this season, as well.
TPS Turku’s expensive Canadian legionnaire COREY LOCKE (84), the former American Hockey League MVP and scoring champion who managed to register five goals and 17 points in 37 Finnish elite league games this season until his departure for Deutschland, skates in on IFK Helsinki goaltender JONI ORTIO, the talented 21-year-old who is out on loan from the Calgary Flames of the National Hockey League, during an SM-liiga contest earlier this season.
With TPS TURKU stuck in twelfth place out of fourteen teams and on the outside looking in on the Suomen mestaruus liiga (Finnish championship league) playoff picture at present, it is, perhaps, not so hard to understand why underachieving Canadian legionnaire COREY LOCKE might have suddenly become available for immediate transfer to defending German champion Eisbaeren Berlin …