The veteran goalie was 21-18-5 last season with a .909 save percentage and 2.87 GAA with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2009-10. Niittymaki is 83-79-28 with a 2.98 GAA and .903 save percentage in 210 career games.
The move comes on the heels of the Sharks' decision not to offer Evgeni Nabokov a new contract with the team. Nabokov won 293 regular-season games during his 10 seasons in San Jose, but shouldered much of the load for the team's postseason failures.
Not only is it a great idea, but if you don't [start using analytics] you're going to fall behind. You have to be on the cutting edge. It was [Arizona Coyotes assistant general manager] Darcy Regier who said, 'If you didn't invent it, you have to be the second- or third-best copier, because if you're fourth or fifth you've got no chance.'
— Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock on his interest in advanced statistical analysis