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Montreal Canadiens sign defenceman Sami Niku to one-year contract

The defenceman will fight for a spot in the NHL.

NHL: JAN 19 JETS AT SENATORS Photo by Steven Kingsman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Montreal Canadiens have signed defenceman Sami Niku to a one-year, two-way contract on Friday.

The deal will pay Niku $750,000 in the NHL and $425,000 in the AHL, with a guaranteed salary of $475,000.

Niku, 24, was most recently with the Winnipeg Jets organization. He had his contract terminated after clearing waivers and was looking for a fresh start with another NHL team.

The 6’1”, 194lb left-shot defenceman was caught between the NHL and AHL with the Jets. He was a seventh round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft. He has two goals and eight assists in 54 career NHL games, and 22 goals and 58 points in 114 AHL games.

Last season, he played six NHL games with the Jets and did not get a point.

He will be a nice addition to a Canadiens group that lacks that kind of natural puck mover. He will likely start the year with the Laval Rocket, but we have already seen opportunities open up due to injuries.


Patrik Bexell is joined by The Athletic Winnipeg’s Murat Ates to discuss Niku and his time in Winnipeg.