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Lightning sign goaltender Niittymaki

The Sports Network

7/10/2009 11:26:08 AM

Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - The Tampa Bay Lightning signed goaltender Antero Niittymaki on Friday.

The Finland native posted a 15-8-6 record with a .912 save percentage and a 2.76 goals-against average for Philadelphia last season.

"We fully recognized the need to add an experienced back-up goaltender this summer and today we feel we've accomplished that goal." said Lightning executive vice president and general manager Brian Lawton. "Not only is Antero already an established number two in the NHL who can steal games, but we feel he is very capable of working with Mike Smith to give us a formidable 1-2 punch in goal."

In parts of five seasons with the Flyers, Niittymaki compiled a 62-61-23 record with a 3.01 GAA and .901 save percentage. During the 2004-05 lockout, he backstopped Philadelphia's American Hockey League affiliate to the Calder Cup.

Niittymaki also started for the Finnish National Team at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, leading the club to the silver medal while being named to the Media All-Star Team. He also was named the Best Goalie and the Olympic Tournament MVP after posting a 5-1-0 record, 1.34 GAA, .951 save percentage and three shutouts in six games.