We posted a report a couple weeks ago saying what is now official: the Sharks have signed goaltender, and male model, Mantas Armalis. Here's what Sam said about Armalis in that initial report:
Armalis was sixth in the Swedish Hockey League with a .918 sv%, he is one of the youngest goalies on the list and has shown that a move over to North America may be savvy. While Armalis may impress on and off the ice over in Europe, his role on the Sharks would more than likely be AHL goaltender. He's a good project at this point, but nothing more.
That holds up. At this point Armalis is only a project for the Sharks, which isn't to dismiss his potential, of course. The Sharks are by no means deep in goal as an organization, so taking on a project is a good move. Here's the press release:
SHARKS SIGN GOALTENDER MANTAS ARMALIS
SAN JOSE - San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) General Manager Doug Wilson announced today that the club has signed goaltender Mantas Armalis (@MantasArmalis) to a standard, entry-level contract.
"Mantas had a number of NHL suitors and we are excited that he chose San Jose," said Wilson. "We've been following his progression up the ranks in Sweden over the last few seasons and he has consistently performed at every level. He has a history of playing above his age group internationally, and we're looking forward to him joining our organization."
Armalis, 23, played in 34 games for Djurgardens posting a 16-13-3-2 record, a 2.42 goals-against average and a .918 save-percentage in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) this season. He ranked 6th in the league in save percentage, T-7th in wins and 10th in goals-against average (minimum 15 games played). In three playoff games, he posted a 3.71 goals-against average and an .895 save percentage.
In 54 career SHL games with Djurgardens, Armalis has recorded 23 wins, a 2.75 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage, and earned a promotion to a higher league in four of the last five seasons (played each of the last two seasons in Sweden's highest professional league).
He has represented his native country of Lithuania on numerous occasions, including the 2015 World Division 1 B Championship, being named the tournament's Best Goaltender and helping his country earn a bronze medal as he finished with the highest save percentage (.938). In 2014, he helped Lithuania to a bronze-medal finish in the same tournament, being named as Lithuania's Top Player (posted a 1.81 GAA and a .922 SV% in five games). In the 2012 World U-20 D2A Championships, Armalis was named the tournament's Best Goaltender after posting a 2.14 goals-against average and a .944 save percentage (best amongst goaltenders) in five games played. He was named Lithuania's Top Player and helped his country earn the silver medal.
The six-foot-four, 195-pound goaltender is a native of Plunge, Lithuania.