The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to find ways to add prospects. Having traded away their second, third, fourth and sixth-round picks in this year’s draft, the Penguins opted to grab a prospect from overseas, as they announced they have signed 22-year-old Finnish goaltender Emil Larmi to a two-year, entry-level contract. The deal has a NHL salary of $700K.
Larmi is coming off an impressive season in the Liiga, where he played 36 games for HPK Hameenlinna, posting a 1.94 GAA and a .900 save percentage, but was even more impressive in 18 playoff games as he led his team to the championships with 12 wins, a 1.72 GAA, a .930 save percentage and two shutouts in the finals. Penguins goaltending development coach Andy Chiodo, who has extensively scouted Larmi in Finland, said of the young keeper:
Emil is coming off of a fantastic playoff run with HPK, and has proved himself to be one of the best goaltenders in Liiga. He’s an athletic and mobile goaltender that reads the game well and is highly competitive. We are excited for Emil to join our organization as he transitions to life and hockey in North America.
Larmi went undrafted as teams were likely wary of his stature as he stands just 6’0″ and 185 pounds. He has spent the last three years with HPK and helped Team Finland win a gold medal at the 2016 World Junior Championship. The goaltender is also teammates with current Penguins prospect Niclas Almari. Larmi could be insurance for their AHL team if they choose to trade goaltending prospect Tristan Jarry this off-season. The team traded away goaltending prospect Filip Gustavsson at the 2018 trade deadline as well and were in need of a boost in the pipeline. The team has only one minor league prospect under contract after Jarry in Alex D’Orio, who has struggled in his two most recent campaigns in the QMJHL.