A two-time Olympian, Niittymaki is one of 15 returning players from Finland’s 2006 Olympic roster.
He starred for Finland at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin, posting a 5-1-0 record, 1.34 goals-against average, .951 save percentage and three shutouts in six games. He was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player and the Top Goaltender as Finland captured the silver medal.
I remember the first time at Wrigley Field all of us had the long johns, the turtlenecks and the extra equipment because we were afraid of being cold. Halfway through the first period everybody's ripping everything off and we just ended up wearing what we would normally wear for a game at the United Center.
— Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp on the 2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic