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Tampa Bay Lightning

Lightning Sign Free Agent Goaltender Antero Niittymaki

Friday, 07.10.2009 / 10:02 AM / Bolts Report
Tampa Bay Lightning
TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed free agent goaltender Antero Niittymaki today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Lawton announced.

“We fully recognized the need to add an experienced back-up goaltender this summer and today we feel we’ve accomplished that goal,” Lawton said. “Not only is Antero already an established number two in the NHL who can steal games, but we feel he is very capable of working with Mike Smith to give us a formidable 1-2 punch in goal.”

Niittymaki, 6-foot-1, 195 pounds, has played in 161 career NHL games, all with the Philadelphia Flyers. He has posted a 62-61-23 record with a .901 save percentage and a 3.01 goals-against average. In 2005-06 Niittymaki was tied for third among rookie goaltenders in wins with 23, the most by a Flyers rookie since 1986-87. He was also named the NHL Defensive Player of the Week for the period ending January 8.

A native of Turku, Finland, Niittymaki won the Silver Medal with his native country at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, posting a 5-1-0 record, 1.34 goals-against average and a .951 save percentage with three shutouts. He was named to the Media All-Star team and was recognized as the Best Goaltender as well as the Tournament Most Valuable Player.

Niittymaki appeared in 32 games with Philadelphia in 2008-09, posting a 15-8-6 record, a .912 save percentage and a 2.76 goals-against average with one shutout. Last season he saw improvements from 2007-08 in games played from 28 to 32, losses from nine to eight, save percentage from .907 to .912 and goals-against average from 2.91 to 2.76.

Entering his sixth NHL season, Niittymaki was drafted by Philadelphia in the sixth round, 168th overall, of the 1998 NHL Entry Draft.

Career Statistics

 

 

 

Regular Season

 

 

 

 

Season

Team

League

GP

W

L

OT

MIN

GA

SO

AVG

1998-99

TPS Turku

Finland-Jr.

35

-

-

-

2095

60

0

1.72

1999-00

TPS Turku.

Finland Jr.

1

1

0

0

60

1

0

1

 

TPS Turku

Finland

32

23

6

2

1899

68

3

2.15

2000-01

TPS Turku

Finland

21

10

6

1

1112

46

2

2.48

2001-02

TPS Turku

Finland

27

16

8

1

1498

46

3

1.84

2002-03

Philadelphia

AHL

40

14

21

2

2283

98

0

2.58

2003-04

Philadelphia

AHL

49

24

13

6

2728

92

7

2.02

 

Philadelphia

NHL

3

3

0

0

180

3

0

1

2004-05

Philadelphia

AHL

58

33

21

4

3453

119

6

2.07

2005-06

Philadelphia

NHL

46

23

15

6

2690

133

2

2.97

 

Finland

Olympics

6

5

1

-

359

8

3

1.34

2006-07

Philadelphia

NHL

52

9

29

9

2943

166

0

3.38

2007-08

Philadelphia

NHL

28

12

9

2

1424

69

1

2.91

2008-09

Philadelphia

NHL

32

15

8

6

1805

83

1

2.76

NHL Totals

 

 

161

62

61

23

9042

454

4

3.01

 


 

 

 

Playoffs

 

 

 

 

Season

Team

League

GP

W

L

MIN

GA

SO

AVG

1998-99

TPS Turku

Finland-Jr.

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

1999-00

TPS Turku.

Finland Jr.

-

-

-

-

-

 

 

 

TPS Turku

Finland

8

6

2

453

13

0

1.72

2000-01

TPS Turku

Finland

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2001-02

TPS Turku

Finland

4

2

2

295

11

0

2.24

2002-03

Philadelphia

AHL

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2003-04

Philadelphia

AHL

12

6

6

796

24

0

1.81

 

Philadelphia

NHL

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2004-05

Philadelphia

AHL

21

15

5

1269

37

3

1.75

2005-06

Philadelphia

NHL

2

0

0

73

5

0

4.11

 

Finland

Olympics

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2006-07

Philadelphia

NHL

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2007-08

Philadelphia

NHL

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2008-09

Philadelphia

NHL

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

NHL Totals

 

 

2

0

0

73

5

0

4.11