Just like they have with many of their other notable players, the Sharks have locked up goaltender Antti Niemi as the Stanley Cup winning goaltender has signed a four-year extension to stay in the Bay Area.
Niemi has appeared in 42 games with San Jose this season, posting a 23-15-3 record with a 2.44 goals-against average (13th NHL), a .919 save percentage (T-13th NHL) and five shutouts (T-5th NHL).
“We wanted Antti to remain a San Jose Shark and he wanted to be here,” said Wilson. Once he got through his expected integration period with our club, Antti’s play has been outstanding and, just as important, he has consistently been a great teammate. And like many of his teammates over this past year, he worked with us on a contract that fits within our team structure and enables us to keep our group intact.”
Niemi was recently named the NHL’s “First Star” for the period ending Feb. 20, when he notched a 3-0-0 record along with a 0.98 goals-against average and a .963 save percentage.
He has started the Sharks last 18 consecutive games posting a 14-2-1 record with a 1.91 goals against average and a .934 save percentage and since Dec. 1, he has a .930 save percentage and a 2.08 goals against average
He was signed as a free agent by San Jose on Sept. 2, 2010.
Niemi, 27, helped lead the Chicago Blackhawks to the Stanley Cup last season, posting a 16-6 mark in 22 Stanley Cup Playoff games, a 2.63 goals-against average and a .910 save percentage along with two shutouts.
During the 2009-10 regular season with Chicago, he notched a 26-7-4 mark in 39 games, with a 2.25 goals-against average (4th in the NHL) and a .912 save percentage and seven shutouts (3rd in the NHL).
The six-foot-two, 210-pound native of Vantaa, Finland was originally signed by the Chicago Blackhawks as a free agent on May 5, 2008.