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Anaheim Ducks Sign Defenseman Sami Vatanen

May 31, 2011 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Syracuse Crunch News Release

Syracuse, NY (May 31, 2011) - The Syracuse Crunch announced today that the Anaheim Ducks have signed defenseman Sami Vatanen to a three-year entry-level contract. As per club policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Vatanen, 19, appeared in 52 contests for JYP Jyvaskyla of the Finnish Elite League in 2010-11, scoring 31 points (11g, 20a) with a plus-30 rating and 30 penalty minutes (PIM). Named the Finnish Elite League's Defenseman of the Year in 2010-11, Vatanen was also selected to the league's postseason All-Star team after leading all defensemen in scoring and ranking first overall in plus/minus. He made his debut with Jyvaskyla in 2009-10, collecting 30 points (7g, 23a) in 55 games. The 5-10, 165-pound blueliner has also netted 9 points (4g, 5a) in 17 career playoff games with Jyvaskyla.

Selected by Anaheim in the fourth round, 106th overall, in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, Vatanen represented Team Finland at the last two IIHF World Junior Championships in Buffalo, NY (2011) and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (2010). He recorded four assists in six games as team captain during the 2011 championship and 5 points (2g, 3a) in six contests at the 2010 tournament. Vatanen also captained Finland to a bronze-medal win over Canada at the 2009 IIHF Under-18 World Championships in Fargo, ND. In six games during the World tournament, he notched five assists with a plus-6 rating.

A native of Jyvaskyla, Finland, Vatanen spent two seasons with his hometown Jyvaskyla junior team prior to making his Finnish Elite League debut in 2009-10. In 55 games with the junior squad, Vatanen collected 48 points (12g, 36a) with 52 PIM between 2007-09.

Season tickets for the 2011-12 season are now on sale and can be purchased by calling the Crunch office at (315) 473- 4444, or by stopping by the Crunch office in the War Memorial at Oncenter, located at 800 South State Street in downtown Syracuse. For the latest Crunch information, fans can visit the team's official website (, or follow the club on Facebook ( and Twitter (

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