Juuse Saros, also known as Little Bear around these parts thanks to his 5' 11'' frame, has had quite the rookie season. In 34 games with the Milwaukee Admirals the 20-year-old has gone 26-7-0 in 34 appearances. During that stretch he has posted the seventh best save percentage (.922) and third best goals allowed average (2.18) among all AHL goalies this season.
The young Finn also made his NHL debut this season back on November 28th against the Buffalo Sabres. He gave up three goals (two via the power play) on 23 shots in what was a 4-1 loss.
Press release via the Milwaukee Admirals:
Milwaukee, WI—Admirals goalie Juuse Saros was selected to the 2015-16 American Hockey Leauge All-Rookie Team.
A fourth-round draft pick by Nashville in 2013, Juuse Saros has shined during his North American debut with Milwaukee this season. Entering Wednesday’s action, the 20-year-old native of Forssa, Finland, is 26-7-0 with four shutouts in 34 appearances for the Admirals, ranking third in the AHL with a 2.18 goals-against average and seventh with a .922 save percentage. Saros, who won eight consecutive starts from Nov. 5 to Dec. 5, is currently 11-1-0 in his last 12 decisions and has helped lead Milwaukee to the top of the Central Division. Saros also made his NHL debut this season, starting for the Predators on Nov. 28 vs. Buffalo.
Saros, who was honored last week at the CCM/AHL Goaltender of the Month for March, is the fifth Admiral to make the All-Rookie Team since the team joined the league in 2001. He joins Darren Haydar (2002-03), Timofei Shishkanov (2003-04), Cody Franson (2007-08), and Viktor Arvidsson (2014-15).
Joining Saros on the All-Rookie Team are:
2015-16 AHL All-Rookie Team (stats through Apr. 5)
Defenseman - Brandon Montour, San Diego Gulls (63gp, 11+41=52pts., E, 29 PP pts.)
Defenseman - Robbie Russo, Grand Rapids Griffins (65gp, 5+34=39pts., +47)
Forward - Austin Czarnik, Providence Bruins (62gp, 16+40=56pts., +15, 5 PPG, 2 SHG)
Forward - Mikko Rantanen, San Antonio Rampage (47gp, 22+34=56pts., +20, 5 PPG, 4 GWG)
Forward - Frank Vatrano, Providence Bruins (33gp, 33+16=49pts., +17, 3 hat tricks)
Could a Pekka Rinne - Juuse Saros duo be a real thing in Nashville next season? This accolade certainly doesn't hurt the idea.