The Tampa Bay Lightning have claimed center Mattias Ritola off waivers from the Detroit Red Wings today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Ritola, 6-foot, 192 pounds, has appeared in seven career NHL games, recording one assist. He skated in five games with the Red Wings last season, registering an even rating while averaging 11:41 in ice time. He also appeared in one Stanley Cup Playoff game.
A native of Borlange, Sweden, Ritola has appeared in 211 AHL games with the Grand Rapids Griffins. He has amassed 41 goals, 65 assists and 106 points during his AHL career. He posted his best season in 2009-10 when he tied for third on the Griffins with 42 points in 73 games, while ranking third on the team with six power-play goals and also recording an AHL career-high 178 shots. Ritola has also played in eight career Calder Cup Playoff games, recording two assists.
Prior to making his North American debut, Ritola began his career in his native country, appearing in 30 games with Leksands of the Swedish Elite League and registering three points and 10 penalty minutes. He also skated in 23 games with Leksands following the club’s relegation to Sweden’s first division, recording two goals and six points. Before turning professional, Ritola played one season in Sweden’s top junior league, notching 26 points in 27 games. He also represented Sweden at the 2006 World Junior Championships, registering four points in six games.
Ritola was originally selected by the Detroit Red Wings in the fourth round, 103rd overall, at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.