St. Louis Blues Sign Goalie Ville Husso to Entry-Level Deal


The St. Louis Blues added another impressive young netminder to their stable of organizational depth on Tuesday, signing Finnish goalie Ville Husso.

The St. Louis Blues announced the signing of goalie Ville Husso to a three-year entry-level contract on Tuesday morning. Husso, a fourth-round pick in 2014, has spent the past three seasons in the Finnish Elite League.

The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder broke out at the 2014-15 World Junior Championships, putting up a 2.29 GAA and .923 save percentage over three games for Team Finland.

In 39 games for HIFK Helsinki this season, the 21-year-old went 25-8-6 with a 1.91 GAA, .927 save percentage, and five shutouts.

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Husso also helped his team to the finals this year and put up a 1.55 GAA and .935 save percentage with four shutouts in 15 postseason games.

Husso’s assignment for 2016-17 likely depends on what the Blues do with the rest of their organizational goaltenders this offseason. Assuming that Brian Elliott and Jake Allen are retained as the NHL netminders–which might not be the safest assumption, considering that both are now considered starting-caliber players and would carry significant trade value–the Blues will have the option to retain Anders Nilsson, Jordan Binnington, and/or Pheonix Copley as organizational depth for next season. All three of those players are restricted free agents, so it’s possible that one or more could be allowed to walk. Despite his strong performance as the third-stringer down the stretch this season, that’d most likely be Nilsson, as the Blues value Copley’s prospect status and also are clearly intrigued by Binnington, as they brought him up to practice with the NHL team following the conclusion of this year’s AHL season.

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All that’s to say that Husso could end up in the AHL if two of the players listed above are allowed to walk. More likely, though, he’ll end up remaining in Europe for 2016-17, as the Blues would probably prefer to keep him playing regularly against strong competition, rather than subjecting him to a timeshare against inferior competition in the ECHL. It should be interesting to see where Husso fits in the plans down the road, as the Blues will also be able to utilize 2015 draftee Luke Opilka in either the AHL or ECHL following the 16-17 season, meaning that there’s going to have to be a decluttering at the goalie position sooner or later.