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Rittich signs two-year contract with Flames

Goalie gets $2.75 million annually, avoids arbitration hearing

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

David Rittich signed a two-year, $5.5 million contract with the Calgary Flames on Saturday. It has an average annual value of $2.75 million.

The 26-year-old goalie, who was a restricted free agent, avoided a salary arbitration hearing scheduled for July 29.

"I'm super excited," Rittich told the Flames website. "I love it in Calgary. The organization gave me a chance to become a goalie in this league, and now I'm hoping to repay them with my play. To get it done before arbitration is even better. No one wants to go through that."

 

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Rittich was 27-9-5 with a 2.61 goals-against average, a .911 save percentage and one shutout in 45 games (42 starts) with the Flames last season. He did not play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, backing up Mike Smith, who signed with the Edmonton Oilers as a free agent. Rittich likely will be the starter ahead of Cam Talbot, signed on July 1.

"Going into this year, I know I have a pretty good chance of being the No. 1 goalie," Rittich said. "That's a big deal. A lot of pressure, maybe. But last year taught me so much about myself and now, I've never been more ready to show what I'm capable of."

Signed as an undrafted free agent by Calgary on June 10, 2016, Rittich is 35-15-8 with a 2.70 GAA, a .909 save percentage and one shutout in 67 games (58 starts).

"If you were to chart his development path, you'd get a straight line, due north, ever since he arrived in our organization," general manager Brad Treliving said. "We believe in David. We've seen what he's capable of already, and the fact that he hasn't even hit his full potential yet speaks to the kind of athlete we're dealing with."

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