San Jose Sharks General Manager Mike Grier announced today that the club has signed goaltender Eetu Makiniemi to a one-year, two-way contract.
“We are excited to sign Eetu,” said Grier. “He is a player who showed great promise before his injury last season. We look forward to his continued development in the upcoming year.”
Makiniemi, 24, appeared in two games with the Sharks in 2022-23 and became the youngest-ever Sharks goaltender (23 years, 234 days) to win his first-career start, posting a 23-save effort Dec. 9 at Anaheim. He made his NHL debut on Dec. 7 against Vancouver, entering in the third period of the contest and making six saves.
The Vantaa, Finland native also played in 22 games with the San Jose Barracuda of the American Hockey League (AHL), registering a pair of shutouts and recording a 2.96 goals-against average (GAA) with a .900 save percentage (SV%). In his AHL career, Makiniemi owns a record of 19-12-4 with four shutouts, a 2.60 GAA and .909 SV%.
Prior to his North American debut, Makiniemi spent the 2020-21 season with Ilves of Liiga (Finland), appearing in 34 games with a record of 13-14-7 along with a 2.59 GAA and .907 SVP. He totaled 41 Liiga contests between the 2019-20 and 2020-21 campaigns with a career record of 15-14-11, 2.43 GAA and .911 SVP. Makiniemi spent the majority of 2019-20 with Koovee (Mestis) in Finland, finishing the year second in the league in save percentage (.908), third in wins (14) and sixth in goals-against average (3.01) en route to earning Mestis Best Goaltender and Mestis Second All-Star Team recognition.
The six-foot-two, 184-pound goaltender was acquired by the Sharks along with forward Steven Lorentz and a 2023 third-round draft pick from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for defenseman Brent Burns (33-percent retained) and forward Lane Pederson on July 13, 2022. Makiniemi was originally selected by Carolina in the 2017 NHL Draft (fourth round, 104th overall).