BUFFALO, NY- The Buffalo Sabres have signed restricted free agent defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen to a six-year contract worth an average annual value of $5.4 million.

The team announced the deal on Tuesday afternoon, two days before their season opener.

The 21-year-old registered a career-high 41 points last season, which ranked 24th among NHL defensemen.

Ristolainen and the Sabres host the Montreal Canadiens in the season opener Thursday, Oct. 13 at the KeyBank Center.