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Archive for September, 2010

Sharks Land 2nd Finnish Goalie of the Offseason

As everyone thought the Sharks had solved their goalie problem, they might have made it harder again. With the Sharks signing Antero Nittymaki to a 2 year $4 Million contract, it seemed that Nittymaki would be the starter and Griess or Stalock would be the backup to him, but now that has changed. As of Friday, the Sharks have signed former Blackhawk Antii Niemi to a 1 year $2 Million contract. But the Sharks almost didn’t get Niemi.

Since Niemi only had a 1 year deal with the Blackhawks he was expecting a major pay raise considering his outstanding playoff performance last season, but when he was only offered a $825,000, he decided to go to arbitration.

After the trial, the arbitrator awarded Niemi with a 2 and 3/4 million dollars, and instead of keeping him, the released him as an unrestricted free agent and replaced him with Marty Turco. But that decision wasn’t all up tho the Hawks. Earlier in the offseason, the Sharks made a move on Defensemen Niklas Hjalmarsson, offering him a 4 year $14 million deal, but the Hawks decided to match the offer. Which meant, with all of their other salary cap issues, when Niemi won the arbitration, the Blackhawks didn’t have the money to keep him. So now he is the 2nd goalie the Sharks have signed this offseason.

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