OK, technically Joni Ortio came from the AHL … and Finland before that. The Calgary Flames selected him with the 171st pick in the 2009 NHL Draft and he actually appeared in nine games last season.
Still, it felt like Ortio came out of nowhere on Saturday, probably especially to the Vancouver Canucks. Ortio stopped all 36 of their shots tonight to give Calgary a 1-0 win.
The Flames made the 23-year-old sweat it, too, as Mikael Backlund scored the game’s only goal 5:38 into the first period.
It’s unclear how long Ortio’s audition might be with the Flames, as the early word on Karri Ramo’s injury is that it doesn’t seem too significant.
Whatever the longer term case may be, Ortio generated some rare success for Calgary against Vancouver:
And prompted a laudably cringe-inducing pun:
He even survived potential jinxing from the Canucks’ Twitter account, which seems a little mean and maybe a little too deliberate to work:
Ortio’s AHL numbers have been pretty respectable (17-8-1 record, .916 save percentage), so maybe he’s career trajectory runs higher than “Who’s that guy who shut out Vancouver that one time?”
Meanwhile, the Canucks were happy with their efforts, if not their luck: