Latvian Hockey News Report

By Didzis Rudmanis

Posts Tagged ‘Western Hockey League

Latvian U20 set for World Juniors

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Yesterday Latvian U20 national team head coach Leonids Beresnevs announced those 22 players, who will set off for Babruisk, Belarus already tomorrow morning, in order to begin the tournament on December 13 and eventually try to return to the Elite Division for next year.

In order to do that, Latvian team will have to beat not only Japanese, Italian, Great Britain and Ukrainian teams, but also its main rivals for the victory in the tournament – Belarussian team, who will host the tournament. Belarussian team this year consists of many already professional players, of whom majority play in the Belarussian league. In combination with the home ice advantage, Belarussians have slightly higher chances of winning the tournament.

Unfortunately, two potential Latvian team participants withdrew from the pre-tournament training camp, as they got injured. Both of them would most likely made the roster – first one of the is HK Riga players Vladislavs Dobrenkijs, but the second one – Rolands Vigners who plays for Reims of the French Division 1 and did magnificently well during the both exhibition tournaments earlier this season.

Yesterday, during the press conference assistant coach Aigars Cipruss also commented that during this season Kristians Pelss (Edmonton Oil Kings) game has improved a lot, and that he has already benefited from crossing the pond last summer.

Tournament schedule:

December 13 Great Britain
December 14 Ukraine
December 16 Japan
December 17 Italy
December 19 Belarus*

*- the game starts at 17:00 GMT and will be broadcasted by LTV7, so there is a slight chance that the game could be streamed somewhere.

Latvian U20 roster:

G Kristers Gudlevskis 1992 HK Riga MHL
G Janis Kalnins 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Edgars Dikis 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Ralfs Freibergs 1991 Texas Tornado NAHL
D Martins Jakovlevs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Karlis Kalvitis 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Martins Porejs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Arturs Salija 1992 HK Riga MHL
D Eriks Sevcenko 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Raimonds Tubelis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Maris Bicevskis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Elvijs Biezais 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Maris Dilevka 1992 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus
F Zemgus Girgensons 1994 Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL
F Girts Jansons 1991 Muik Hockey Finland4
F Egils Kalns 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus
F Ronalds Kenins 1991 GC Kusnacht Lions NLB
F Arturs Mickevics 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Kristians Pelss 1992 Edmonton Oil Kings WHL
F Davis Straupe 1992 HK Riga MHL
F Juris Upitis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Bruno Zabis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
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Latvian U20 candidates announced

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Latvian U20 national team head coach Leonids Beresnevs has announced those 30 players, who will take part in the pre-World Junior Championship training camp in Jelgava from December 6 until December 11.

The final roster of the team will be announced on December 10. Already the next day the team will leave for Babruysk, Belarus, where on December 13 will play already against British U20 national team.

List of the candidates:

G Janis Auzins 1991 Zemgale Latvia
G Kristers Gudlevskis 1992 HK Riga MHL
G Janis Kalnins 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Reinis Demiters 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Edgars Dikis 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Kristers Freibergs 1992 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus
D Ralfs Freibergs 1991 Texas Tornado NAHL
D Martins Jakovlevs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Karlis Kalvitis 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Martins Porejs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Arturs Salija 1992 HK Riga MHL
D Eriks Sevcenko 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Raimonds Tubelis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Maris Bicevskis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Elvijs Biezais 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Maris Dilevka 1992 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus
F Vladislavs Dobrenkijs 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Maksims Firsovs 1991 SK LSPA/Riga Latvia
F Zemgus Girgensons 1994 Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL
F Girts Jansons 1991 Muik Hockey Finland4
F Egils Kalns 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus
F Ronalds Kenins 1991 GC Kusnacht Lions NLB
F Edgars Kurmis 1993 HK Riga MHL
F Arturs Mickevics 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Kristians Pelss 1992 Edmonton Oil Kings WHL
F Nils Semjonovs 1991 Aberdeen Wings NAHL
F Davis Straupe 1992 HK Riga MHL
F Juris Upitis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Rolands Vigners 1991 Reims French Division 1
F Bruno Zabis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja Belarus

Pelss talks about his own past

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Once Edmonton Oilers had picked Latvian forward Kristians Pelss in the seventh round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, a lot of people wondered, who is this kid. As months passed and Pelss arrived to Edmonton, some of them were resolved, but not a lot about his earlier days was learned. We now offer not only some background info about the player, but also a small conversation with Pelss.

Kristians has began 2010-11 by posting a goal and adding a single assist in 10 games for the Edmonton Oil Kings of the WHL.

Pelss, who was born in Preili, for the first time stepped on ice in Daugavpils, where he began his junior career. At the age of 16 he managed to earn a spot on the DHK Latgale team, which played in the Belarusian league – a professional league, comparable to British Elite Ice Hockey League, French Ligue Magnus or even Austrian EBEL. In 2009-10, when DHK Latgale, due to financial problems, returned to playing in Latvian league, which currently is a half-professional league, Pelss joined Dinamo Juniors Riga, the farm club of KHL’s Dinamo Riga.

Pelss statistics:

GP G A P PIM
2008-2009 DHK Latgale Belarus 31 3 4 7 17
DHK Latgale-2 Latvia 22 9 11 20 24
Daugavpils U20 Latvia U20 8 3 9 12 16
Latvia U18 WJC-18 D1 4 0 1 1 6
2009-2010 Dinamo Juniors Riga Belarus 46 6 3 9 28
Latvia U18 WJC-18 6 2 1 3 0

Kristians also did not mind answering us a couple of questions about his earlier days of his hockey career.

Who encouraged you to start playing hockey?

– When I was eight years old, my father took me to Daugavpils, where at that time an arena had been recently opened, and already before my first practice he bought me a full equipment – by then I never once had skated, but I learned that fairly quick and I really enjoyed it. Before turning to ice hockey, for several years I attended Judo lessons.

Do you consider yourself an alumnus of Metalurgs Liepaja or Daugavpils hockey school? After all, you have spent reasonable time in both of the cities.

– Despite the fact that I gained a lot also during my time in Liepaja, I am without a doubt an alumnus of Daugavpils hockey school, because that is where I started to play and that is where I grew up as a hockey player.

When you returned to Daugavpils, you had just turned 16 years old – did you expect to make the roster of DHK Latgale, who played in the Belarusian league, straight away?

– No, but prior 2008-09 I was coached by Jurijs Agureikins, who let me practice and play together with one up to three years older players than myself, which I am truly thankful to him.

How did you feel, when, being 16 years old, you started playing among professionals?

– Straight away I felt the difference between junior and professional hockey. Still, at least in my opinion, I got used to the professional hockey pretty fast, as my teammates helped me a lot, often saying what I ought to do in different situations.

What relationship do you have with Vitalijs Hvorostinins? [Hvorostinins also comes from Preili and now plays for Val-d’Ior Foreurs in the QMJHL]

– Well, I could say that he is my best friend – we grew up together and for a longer time played together. Also now we regularly talk to each other on Skype, encouraging one another and that really helps, when you don’t see your friends too often.

Latvian Legion 2010/11

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This list was last updated in mid-January, 2011.

As some of the European leagues have already started their 2010/11 seasons and many others are on the very verge of it, I believe, it is exactly the right time to post a list of all the Latvian players, spending their upcoming seasons abroad. The current list includes 150 players.

This list is never going to be fully complete and that is why any additions or corrections are welcomed at the comments section.

North America

  • National hockey league
  1. Karlis Skrastins – Dallas Stars
  2. Oskars Bartulis – Philadelphia Flyers
  3. Raitis Ivanans – Calgary Flames
  4. Arturs Kulda – Atlanta Thrashers (a possible call-up)
  • American hockey league
  1. Arturs Kulda – Chicago Wolves
  2. Kaspars Daugavins – Binghamton Senators
  3. Oskars Bartulis – Adirondack Phantoms
  • Western hockey league
  1. Kristians Pelss – Edmonton Oil Kings
  • United States hockey league
  1. Zemgus Girgensons – Dubuque Fighting Saints
  • ACHA
  1. Renars Rukmanis – Duquesne University
  • MetJHL
  1. Hedijs Pleskacovs – Florida Eels
  2. Livars Lans – Florida Eels
  • NAHL
  1. Nils Semjonovs – Aberdeen Wings
  2. Ralfs Freibergs – Texas Tornado
  3. Ricards Berzins – Wenatchee Wild
  • GMHL
  1. Nikita Jevpalovs – South Muskoka Shield
  2. Toms Taurins – Bradford Rattlers
  3. Rudolfs Prusis – Bradford Rattlers
  • CSHL
  1. Nauris Buskevics – Quad City Jr. Flames
  • WSHL
  1. Alberts Boluss – Texas Jr. Brahmas
  2. Ivo Dimitrijevs – Arizona Redhawks
  • IJHL
  1. Mareks Kepals – Boston Jr. Blackhawks
  2. Girts Savrinovics – Philadelphia Jackals
  • RAMHL
  1. Ainis Zalans – Sisec Selects
  2. Rihards Marenis – Sisec Selects
  3. Davis Sprukts – Sisec Selects
  • Midget AAA
  1. Hardijs Kupaks – Ohio Jr. Blue Jackets
  2. Mikus Sprinovskis – PEAC Piranhas
  • Midget AA
  1. Rudolfs Kalvitis – Shattuck St. Mary’s
  • Prep School
  1. Teodors Blugers – Shattuck St. Mary’s
  2. Olafs Jurenko – Cedarburg Bulldogs
  • Rocky Mountain Senior hockey league
  1. Ivars Muzis – Sun Valley Suns
  2. Vilnis Nikolaisons – Sun Valley Suns

Europe

Austria

  • Austrian Oberliga (third tier)
  1. Matiss Gelazis – Graz 99ers II (also plays in Slovenian league)
  2. Zintis Zusevics – Graz 99ers II (also plays in Slovenian league)

Belarus

  • Belarussian Extraleague
  1. Atvars Tribuncovs – Gomel
  • MHL
  1. Edgars Ulescenko – Yunost
  2. Aleksandrs Kercs jr. – Yunost
  3. Aleksandrs Galkins – Zubry Minsk

Czech Republic

  • Czech Extraliga
  1. Aleksejs Sirokovs – HC Kometa Brno
  • Czech 2. liga (third tier)
  1. Aleksandrs Baburins – HC Most

Denmark

  • Al-Bank Ligaen
  1. Sergejs Cubars – Hvidovre
  • Denmark2
  1. Oskars Jursans – Gladsaxe
  2. Dmitrijs Orlovs – Amager Ishockey

Estonia

  • Meistriliiga
  1. Maris Lotko – HK Kalev-Valk Tartu
  2. Lauris Dancis – HK Kalev-Valk Tartu
  3. Davis Zunde – HK Kalev-Valk Tartu

Finland

  • SM-liiga
  1. Kaspars Saulietis – HPK
  2. Armands Berzins – HPK
  • Mestis
  1. Roberts Jekimovs – Jokipojat
  • Suomi-sarja
  1. Gints Purins – Hermes
  2. Gatis Gricinskis – Hermes
  3. Janis Purins – Hermes
  4. Raitis Pujats – FPS
  5. Mihails Koklins – HC Levia
  • Finland4
  1. Girts Jansons – Muik Hockey
  2. Viktors Jasjonis – IK Kronan
  3. Artjoms Ogorodnikovs – IK Kronan
  4. Vadims Vabiscevics – Kraft
  5. Edgars Cermnihs – Kraft
  6. Vladislavs Dudins – Kraft
  7. Janis Liepa – PyPo
  8. Edgars Dzirkalis – PyPo
  9. Roberts Danemanis – PyPo
  10. Nauris Enkuzens – Kiekkohait
  11. Martins Gipters – Kiekkohait
  • Jr. B I-divisioona
  1. Konstantis Sipunovs – Ahmat Hyvinkaa U18

France

  • Ligue Magnus
  1. Olegs Koreskovs – Morzine-Avoriaz
  • Division 1
  1. Rolands Vigners – Reims
  2. Raimonds Danilics – Montpellier
  3. Janis Brakss – Montpellier
  4. Janis Straupe – Montpellier
  • Division 2
  1. Elvis Zelubovskis – Lyon
  • French U22 league
  1. Rolands Vigners – Reims U22

Germany

  • DEL
  1. Herberts Vasiljevs – Krefeld Pinguine
  • Regionalliga
  1. Lauris Ziemins – Herford
  • U20 Bundesliga
  1. Janis Berzins – ESC Moskitos Essen U20
  • DNL
  1. Arturs Birstins – SC Riessersee U18
  2. Vladislavs Tatarnikovs- SC Riessersee U18

Great Britain

  • EIHL
  1. Toms Hartmanis – Newcastle Vipers
  2. Ervins Mustukovs – Sheffield Steelers
  3. Aivars Gaisins – Hull Stingrays
  • EPIHL
  1. Maris Ziedins – Peterborough Phantoms
  2. Kristaps Pete – Sheffield Steeldogs
  3. Kriss Grundmanis – Sheffield Steeldogs
  4. Edgars Bebris – Sheffield Steeldogs (according to eliteprospects.com, has gained an UK citizenship)
  5. Janis Ozolins – Sheffield Steeldogs
  6. Andrejs Maslovskis – Telford Tigers

Italy

  • Serie A
  1. Agris Saviels – Valpellice
  • Serie B
  1. Olegs Sorokins – Vipiteno

Kazakhstan

  • Kazakh league
  1. Martins Raitums – Beibarys Atyrau
  2. Andrejs Smirnovs – Beibarys Atyrau
  3. Sergejs Tjoluskins – Beibarys Atyrau

Lithuania

  • Ledo Ritulio Lyga
  1. Vladimirs Parhomenko – Ledo Linija Siauliai
  2. Arturs Batraks – Ledo Linija Siauliai
  3. Raitis Brinecs – Ledo Linija Siauliai
  4. Andris Valters – Ledo Linija Siauliai
  5. Igors Birjukovs – Sadvita Klaipeda
  6. Kristaps Buzats – Sadvita Klaipeda
  7. Nikita Dobrenkijs – Sadvita Klaipeda
  8. Aleksejs Proposins – Sadvita Klaipeda
  9. Guntis Pujats – Sadvita Klaipeda

Netherlands

  • Eredivisie
  1. Aleksandrs Terjohins – Heerenveen Flyers

Norway

  • Get Division (second thier)
  1. Janis Smits – Comet

Poland

  • Polish 2nd league
  1. Toms Bluks – Sokoly Torun
  2. Edgars Adamovics – Sokoly Torun
  3. Andrejs Lavrenovs – Sokoly Torun

Russia

  • KHL
  1. Martins Cipulis – Amur Khabarovsk
  2. Georgijs Pujacs – Sibir Novosibirsk
  3. Aleksandrs Jerofejevs – Metallurg Novokuznetsk
  4. Edgars Masalskis – Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk
  5. Maris Jass – Neftekhimik Niznekamsk
  • VHL
  1. Sergejs Pecura – Krylia Sovetov
  • MHL
  1. Artjoms Dasutins – HK Sheriff
  2. Edgars Ulescenko – Yunost
  3. Aleksandrs Kercs jr. – Yunost
  4. Ronalds Cinks – Krylia Sovetov
  5. Aleksandrs Galkins – Zubry Minsk
  • Russian 1st league
  1. Andrejs Ignatovics – Titan Klin
  2. Juris Ozols – Tital Klin

Slovenia

  • Slovenian league
  1. Matiss Gelazis – Graz 99ers II (also plays in Austrian Oberliga)
  2. Zintis Zusevics – Graz 99ers II (also plays in Austrian Oberliga)

Sweden

  • Division 1
  1. Aleksandrs Semjonovs – Arboga
  2. Rolands Gritans – Arboga
  3. Arturs Ozolins – Karlskrona HK
  4. Maksims Sirokovs – Karlskrona HK
  5. Sergejs Louskins – Lindlovens IF
  6. Renars Undelis – Lindlovens IF
  7. Alberts Ilisko – Nynashamns IF
  8. Valters Ozolins – Arlanda
  9. Krists Kalnins – Arlanda
  10. Aleksandrs Macijevskis – Bjorkloven
  11. Nikolajs Jerofejevs – Tranas
  • Division 2
  1. Martins Ozolins – Sollentuna HC
  2. Toms Tilla – Sollentuna HC
  3. Aleksandrs Bebriss-Fedotovs – Vannas HC
  4. Roberts Potapenko – Vannas HC
  5. Vadims Maticins – Jonstorps IF
  • Division 3
  1. Elvis Veldze – Syrianska/Armeniska HC
  2. Oskars Blums – Syrianska/Armeniska HC
  • J20 Elit
  1. Kristaps Legzdins – Sunne J20
  • J20 Div. 1
  1. Boriss Tretjakovs – Arboga J20
  • J18 Elit
  1. Martins Lavrovs – Arlanda J18
  2. Edgars Klavins – Lidingo J18
  3. Ansis Brikainis – Lidingo J18
  4. Kristaps Riekstins – Lidingo J18
  5. Kristaps Bazevics – Lidingo J18
  6. Girts Zemitis – Nacka HK J18
  7. Roberts Smits – Nykoping J18
  8. Aleksandrs Bebriss-Fedotovs – Vannas J18
  9. Roberts Potapenko – Vannas J18
  • J18 Div. 1
  1. Boriss Tretjakovs – Arboga J18
  2. Romans Semjonovs – Arboga J18

Switzerland

  • NLB
  1. Ronalds Kenins – GC/Kusnacht Lions
  2. Eriks Ozollapa – Basel
  • 1. Amateur Regio League (third tier)
  1. Gundars Berkis – Chiasso
  • Elite Jr. A
  1. Juris Zandovskis – Gotteron U20
  2. Martins Mezulis – Gotteron U20
  3. Ronalds Kenins – GCK/ZSC Lions U20
  • Elite Jr. B
  1. Janis Kenins – Thurgau U20
  • Elite Novizen
  1. Elvis Merkzlikins – Lugano U18
  2. Deivids Sarkanis – Lugano U18
  3. Ivars Punnenovs – Pikes Oberthurgau U18

Written by Didzis Rudmanis

September 6, 2010 at 21:59

Posted in Latvians around the world

Tagged with , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Latvian U20 candidates list

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There is not much time left until the beginning of September, when Latvian U20 team will play already in the sixth Sergei Zholtok Memorial Cup. The candidates list for the team has been made available.

In December the team, led by Leonids Beresnevs, will play in World U20 Championships Div.1 tournament in Belarus. Latvian team will have only one aim – to win over Belarusians and to return to the Elite division.

Candidates list:

G Janis Kalnins 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
G Toms Broks 1991 HK Riga MHL
G Kristers Gudlevskis 1992 HK Riga MHL
D Glebs Rogoza 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Reinis Demiters 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Romans Sevcenko 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Raimonds Tubelis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Rolands Gritans 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
D Martins Jakovlevs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Arturs Salija 1992 HK Riga MHL
D Edgars Dikis 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Martins Porejs 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Eriks Sevcenko 1991 HK Riga MHL
D Nikita Kolesnikovs 1992 HK Riga MHL
D Ralfs Freibergs 1991 ?
D Kristers Freibergs 1992 ?
D Karlis Kalvitis 1991 ?
F Arturs Mickevics 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Edgars Abolins 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Maris Dilevka 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Egils Kalns 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Bruno Zabis 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Nils Semjonovs 1991 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Juris Upitis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Maris Bicevskis 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Elvijs Biezais 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Vladislavs Dobrenkijs 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Davis Straupe 1992 HK Riga MHL
F Miks Lipsbergs 1991 HK Riga MHL
F Ronalds Kenins 1991 GC/Kusnacht Lions NLB
F Rolands Vigners 1991 Reims France2
F Girts Jansons 1991 Muik Hockey Finland4
F Kristians Pelss 1992 Edmonton Oil Kings WHL
F Maksims Firsovs 1991 ?
F Mikus Ozols 1991 ?
F Raimonds Upenieks 1992 HK Riga MHL
F Vitalijs Hvorostinins 1992 ?
F Arturs Kuzmenkovs 1993 Metalurgs Liepaja-2 Latvia
F Artjoms Dasutins 1993 HK Sheriff MHL

Pelss joins Oil Kings

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I know this is coming a bit late, but, while majority of the “prospect-talk” in Latvia was all around Sotnieks and Podzins last month, professional reporters/journalists (I don’t consider myself professional, as I’m not getting paid for what I do) missed that Kristians Pelss, who was drafted by Edmonton Oilers in early June, showed himself at the Oilers Development Camp and was confirmed to join Edmonton Oil Kings of the WHL.

Oil Kings general manager Bob Green described Pelss as a player with lots of skill. He mentioned that Kristians is an explosive skater, with tremendous speed. Green believes that Pelss will generate a lot of opportunities.

It is very interesting that in the second half of July Dinamo Riga, who picked Pelss at the KHL draft, added his name to the HK Riga pre-season camp list and that it was never announced that he opted to stay in North America.

Three Latvians drafted in the CHL Import Draft (updated)

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Today Latvian forwards Kristians Pelss, who was drafted into the NHL by Edmonton Oilers three days ago, and Vitalijs Hvorostinins, as well as defender Ricards Berzins(Richards Berzins), were drafted during the CHL Import Draft. Pelss was picked by the Edmonton Oil Kings of WHL #19 overall, while Hvorostinins was selected by Val-d’Or Foreurs #30 overall, but Berzins was picked by Owen Sound Attack #58 overall.

Let me just remind you that last season Pelss played for the Dinamo-Juniors Riga in the Belarusian league. Pelss, who learned the game of hockey in Daugavpils, scored nine points in 48 games last season. He also played in the U18 IIHF World Championship in Minsk, where was one of the Latvian national team leaders, although managed to score only two goals.

Vitalijs Hvorostinins, just like Pelss, learned the game of hockey in Daugavpils and, instead of Pelss, Hvorostinins played in local DHK Latgale last season, scoring 23 (9+14) points in 30 games. He also played several games for the Daugavpils U18 team.

Ricards Berzins spent previous season with HS Prizma/Pardaugava 92 in the Latvian U18 league and did not make the Latvian U18 national team. In 2008-09 he also played 20 games for Latvian league club HS Prizma/Hanza Riga. Before this draft, his name was rather unfamiliar around the Latvian hockey community.

The highest-ever drafted Latvian player in the CHL Import Draft was Agris Saviels, who was the number one draft pick in 1999. He was picked by Owen Sound Attack. In a more recent history, Kaspars Daugavins was the third overall pick in 2006. He was chosen by Toronto St. Michael’s Majors of OHL. Last year Daugavins made his debut in the NHL, playing a single game for the Ottawa Senators.