12 June 1973|
|Height||1.63 m (5 ft 4 in)|
|Weight||60 kg (132 lb; 9 st 6 lb)|
Hanna-Riikka Sallinen (née Nieminen, previously Välilä, born 12 June 1973) is a retired Finnish ice hockey, bandy, rink bandy, and pesäpallo player. She is known internationally for playing on the Finnish national ice hockey team during 16 seasons. Her international debut with the team was at the 1989 Women's European Championship and she notably won bronze medals at the 1998 and the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. Sallinen was inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame on 21 May 2010 in Cologne, Germany, as part of the World Championship festivities; she was only the fourth woman to receive this honor.
Sallinen's bronze medal at the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang made her the oldest ice hockey medallist at a Winter Olympics. She was awarded the medal at age 44, 20 years after she first won a medal in the first women's Olympic hockey tournament.
Riikka Sallinen represented Finland in three IIHF Women's European Championships, seven IIHF World Women's Championships, and three Olympics. In her first Olympics in 1998 that she would lead the tournament in scoring, amassing 12 points (7 goals & 5 assists) in six games, while leading the Finnish team to the Bronze Medal. Sallinen would also lead the Finnish national team to three European Championship titles and four IIHF World Women's Championship bronze medals.
Over her international career she would score 109 goals, 95 assists for 204 points while accumulating only 24 PIMs.
In August 2013, the IIHF reported that she was attempting a comeback and in December 2013, following several matches in the Naisten SM-sarja, she was selected for the Finnish women's team for the Sochi Olympics. She made the Finnish Olympic team again for the 2018 Olympics, helping Finland to a bronze medal.
Ice hockey awards and honours
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Riikka Sallinen". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC.
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Finland Ice Hockey at the 1998 Nagano Winter Games". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 13 March 2009.
- "IIHF Hall of Fame inducts six new members". National Hockey League. Retrieved 5 March 2010.
- "Winter Olympics: Finland beat OAR 3–2 to claim women's ice hockey bronze". BBC. 21 February 2018. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
- "IIHF Hall welcomes five". International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 7 March 2010.
- Risto Pakarinen (13 August 2013). "Välilä makes comeback". International Ice Hockey Federation. Archived from the original on 2 January 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
- Seppänen, Antti, ed. (5 February 2018). "Liiga palkitsi kauden 2017–18 parhaat – tässä palkittujen lista" [Liiga rewarded the best of the 2017-18 season- the list of award winners]. liiga.fi (in Finnish). Retrieved 5 July 2019.