Finland’s golden boy, Tuomo Ruutu, has beautiful Head & Shoulders flow, an adorable crooked grin, gritty play, and soft hands. The Carolina Hurricane center is a well-decorated player and fan favorite. Ruutu was born on this day in 1983 in Vantaa, Finland. He was originally drafted 1st round, 9th overall in the 2001 NHL entry draft by the Chicago Blackhawks. He was acquired from Chicago in exchange for Andrew Ladd on February 26, 2008.
Mr. Tuomo has played in 57 games for the Canes this season and has claimed 17 goals and 13 assists as the team’s second leading point scorer. He is also known for glass shattering hits. Ruutu has represented Finland in ten major international tournaments, including the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver in which Finland earned the bronze medal. #15 led his team in scoring to help Finland claim gold at the 2000 Under-18 World Junior Championship. Ruu snagged yet another medal with silver at the 2001 Under-20 World Junior Championship. Oh wait, and another bronze at the 2002 Under-20 World Junior Championship. Finally, led the in scoring with 10 points to assist Finland in capturing the bronze medal at the 2003 Under-20 World Junior Championship. That’s enough bling to make Lil Jon jealous.
I’ve done this in the past, but it’s too fun to pass up. Here are some fun #15 stats involving 15…
- Made his NHL playoff debut on April 15th
- Only played 15 games in the 2005-06 season due to injuries.
- In his debut game with the Canes on February 26th, Ruutu only played for roughly 15 minutes. He was forced to leave the game in the final twenty with a facial injury that left him looking like a character straight out of the Nightmare Before Christmas.
- He missed 15 games in the 2009-10 season, but return on his own bobblehead night to score an empty-netter on Florida.
- In 2002-03 he earned 15 helpers for HIFK Helsinki of the Finnish Elite League in 30 contests.
- In March of 2003-04 he was named the NHL’s Rookie of the Month for earning 8 goals and 8 assists in 15 games.
Unfortunately, Ruutu is spending his birthday on a three week involuntary vacation due to an upper-body injury which occurred against Montreal on February 13th. So he deserves the world’s best <fake> gifts from Cardiac Cane this year…
- A shiny, new Carolina Hurricanes contract to guarantee him Raleigh residency for many years to come.
- Immediate perfect health, so he can play in Friday’s game against San Jose.
- Let’s temporarily freeze hockey, and send the 80’s hair metal fan to the Cleveland Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame on April 5th for the induction of Guns N’ Roses. Of course, he would get to hang out with the band and take home some great memorabilia.
- Love this gift idea from fellow Cardiac Cane writer, Sally: Control of all the music at the RBC center for a night (Yikes! Maybe just warm ups? Still yikes!)
- Dislike this gift idea from Sally: Weekly home delivery service of fresh Reindeer meat
- Although Sally regrets providing this gift idea to me before Ruutu’s injury, it is a nice gift: A special Iron Man suit so he can play his gladiator style of hockey and never get hurt. *cringe*
- I would like to add his Iron Man suit would allow him to run with the bulls.
- He once told a few Caniacs a certain level of attention from a fan can be “creepy,” I will have said ‘fan’ relocated to Buffalo.
Happy Birthday Mr. Ruutu! Cheers to a long, healthy career consumed with happiness and success. Add your gifts in the comment section! Be sure to follow me on Twitter today to catch great Ruu highlight clips. You may follow the rest of the gang at: @esbee92, @caniac176, and @peacelovepuck.
*Statistics from NHL.com