Karri Ramo

Basics

Type: 
Out of Organization
Position: 
Goaltender
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
6.03
Weight: 
207
Born: 
07/01/1986
Age: 
27
Hometown: 
Asikkala, FIN
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 6 (#191) of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Calgary (NHL)
Projects As: 
No. 1 Goaltender
Prospect Ranking: 
2
Grad Date: 
04/07/2009

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2004
Draft Type: 
NHL Entry Draft
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
6
Pick No.: 
191
Draft Team: 
Pelicans Lahti (FIN Jr.)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned
Waiver Status: 
Waiver Exempt
Signing Date: 
05/31/2006
Contract Type: 
Two-way
Contract Length: 
3 years
Cap Number: 
$658 333
Contract Start Year: 
2006
Contract End Status: 
RFA
Salary: 
$600 000
Salary: 
$650 000
Salary: 
$725 000

Bio

History: 

Junior Career

Asikkala's native son started his career with the cash strapped Lahti Pelicans organization in Finland. In 2001-2002 at age 16 he saw his first action for the Pelicans' Junior-C club. He advanced steadily through the ranks and the next season had played in 19 games with a 2.78 GAA and a .906 save percentage in Junior-B. In 2003-2004 he made the next two steps in his progression playing 18 games with a 3.31 GAA and a .907 save percentage in Junior-A while making his SM-liiga debut playing 3 games with Lahti's men's team. That summer the Lightning selected Ramo in the 6th round of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft and invited him to come to Traverse City to participate in the annual prospect tournament. Ramo opened the Lightning's eyes with a sterling 37 save performance in a 3-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues prospect team in his first and only, to this point, start in North American hockey. Brimming with confidence, Ramo returned to Lahti's Junior-A side and proceeded to lead the league with an incredible 1.70 GAA and .945 save percentage, besting even Toronto Maple Leafs' first round pick Tuukka Rask. More impressively, Ramo would become Pelicans' SM-liiga starter at age 18 when at mid season veteran Pasi Nurminen left the team and injuries forced Ramo into the number one spot. Ramo responded by playing 26 games at the SM-liiga level with a respectable 3.98 GAA and .898 save percentage at 18 years old for a woefully underfunded last place team. Indeed, in his first month at the elite level Ramo won more games for Lahti than Nurminen had the entire first half of the season. At year's end, with the SM-liiga club well out of contention and Pelicans' Junior-A team struggling to make the playoffs Ramo wasrturned to the junior ranks where he masterfully pitched three consecutive shutouts in the final three games of the regular season to guide the team to the #7 seed in the SM-liiga playoffs. In the playoffs, Pelicans was quickly crushed but the performance was sufficient to attract the attention of SM-liiga powerhouse HPK who signed Ramo away from Lahti in the offseason. Ramo also was given the opportunity to play for Finland in the 2004 U18 World Junior Championships where he backed up Rask defeating Denmark 4-1 in his lone appearance as Finland finished 7th on the tournament table. Ramo began his year in HPK a tandem situation with young goaltender Miika Wiikman, but he soon claimed the starting spot and was leading the SM-liiga in GAA and save percentage before a knee injury in November kept him out of action for a month. The injury not only hurt Ramo's momentum in the SM-liiga season but it hurt him in his quest to dethrone Rask as Finland's starting goaltender in the 2005 U20 World Junior Championships where he again played the role of backup allowing 7 goals in his lone appearance against a talent rich Team USA roster. Finland would go on to win bronze behind Rask and Ramo would return to tandem duties for HPK. Together with Wiikman, Ramo and HPK claimed the SM-liiga championship in 2005-2006, although Wiikman carried the starting load in the final two series of the playoffs.

Professional Career

Ramo began his rookie season in North American pro hockey with Springfield of the AHL where he quickly seized the team's starting job away from veteran Sean Burke. After an impressive first half of the season, Ramo was named to the AHL Eastern Conference All-Star team and Ramo won the Best Goaltender Award at the AHL Skills Competition. As Springfield struggled in the second half of the season, Ramo's statistics took a hit and he finished the year 15-24-1 with 1 shutout, a 3.13 GAA and a .906 save percentage. Ramo also received two injury callups to the NHL over the course of the year and was called up full time to the Lightning for the final month of the season. Ramo made his NHL debut in relief on December 2nd, 2006 in Ottawa allowing 2 goals on 18 shots faced. In two relief apparances total, Ramo allowed 4 goals on 23 shots and had a 3.43 GAA and .826 save percentage. Ramo was named as the Lightning's backup goaltender by Head Coach John Tortorella at the start of the 2007 NHL Playoffs. Ramo was sent down to Norfolk of the AHL at the start of the 2007-2008 season despite leading the Lightning training camp scrimmages in save percentage. The young goaltender suffered a high ankle sprain in his first game of the AHL season and missed nearly two months of action before returning to the lineup for Norfolk in December. Ramo posted a 2-4-0 record for Norfolk with a 3.33 GAA and .898 save percentage before being recalled full time to Tampa Bay on December 19, 2007. The young netminder won his first ever NHL start on December 20, 2007 against Toronto stopping 31 shots in a 2-1 win over the Maple Leafs. Ramo finished the year with Tampa Bay with a 7-11-3 record with a 3.03 GAA and .899 save percentage in 22 appearances.

Scouting Report

Strengths: 

Ramo has good size and athleticism and plays a quick butterfly style. Has a stout frame and fatigues little over the course of games. He has a solid glove and maturity beyond his years in the mental game. He loves to handle the puck and is good at passing and shooting the biscuit.

Weaknesses: 

Struggled with his rebound control at the U20 World Junior Championships but that may have been a product of nerves as this is known as a strength of his in the SM-liiga. He's still relatively green experience wise and is now starting to get the game action he needs to continue to develop toward his potential. Has a tendency to be overaggressive in challenging the shooter and needs to work on simply playing the angles and using an economy of motion to stop pucks.

Projection: 

Ramo has the upside to one day become a starting goaltender in the NHL. With the free agent acquisition of Olaf Kolzig, Ramo is expected to be the starting goaltender for Tampa's AHL affiliate in Norfolk for the 2008-2009 season.

Statistics