The Detroit Red Wings today signed center Valtteri Filppula to a two-year contract.
Filppula, 35, was a 2008 Stanley Cup champion with the Red Wings and returns to the team after recording 251 points (100-151-251), a plus-43 rating and 158 penalty minutes with Detroit from 2005-13. He has gone on to total 948 NHL games with the Red Wings, Tampa Bay Lightning, Philadelphia Flyers and New York Islanders, registering 494 points (185-309-494), a plus-39 rating and 310 penalty minutes. The 6-foot, 196-pound forward has also appeared in 166 career NHL Stanley Cup Playoff games – 105 of them during his time with the Red Wings – tallying 86 points (25-61-86), a plus-four rating and 38 penalty minutes. He appeared in the Stanley Cup Final with the Lightning in 2015 after making back-to-back Final appearances with Detroit in 2008 and 2009 during his second and third NHL seasons.
In 2018-19, Filppula skated in 72 games with the Islanders and ranked among team leaders with 17 goals (7th) and 31 points (8th), representing his highest goal total since scoring a career-best 25 goals with Tampa Bay in 2013-14, his first season away from Detroit. His most productive offensive campaign came with the Red Wings in the 2011-12 season, notching 66 points (23-43-66) in 81 games. The 14-year veteran and Vantaa, Finland, native ranks among the top Finnish-born NHL players of all time, ranking 10th in games played and 11th in points, sitting just 52 games shy of the 1,000 game mark and six points away from 500.
Filppula, who was originally drafted by Detroit in the third round (95th overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft, also appeared in 77 games with the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins from 2005-07, racking up 74 points (22-52-74) and was an AHL All-Star as a rookie in 2005-06. He has also logged 120 games in the SM-Liiga, Finland’s highest professional league, from 2003-05 and in 2012-13, showing 63 points (21-42-63), all with Jokerit Helsinki. Internationally, Filppula scored three goals in six games at the 2010 Winter Olympics, winning a bronze medal, and has represented Finland twice at the IIHF World Championship (2012 and 2017), combining for 15 points (6-9-15) in 20 games.