|Photo: Andy Devlin / Edm Oil Kings|
New this morning from the Edmonton Oilers that they have signed 2010 7th round selection Kristians Pelss to a 3-year entry level contract. Here is the official release. Pelss is currently a member of the WHL's Edmonton Oil Kings who are getting ready to open the league championship series at home against the Portland Winterhawks this Thursday night.
Pelss ended the 2011-12 campaign with 28 goals and 50 points through 63 games. He also captained Latvia's entry at the 2012 World Junior Championship.Last month I detailed my thoughts on the four players the Oilers had left to sign to prevent losing their rights. At the time I suggested that Pelss was a player I would get under contract if I were the NHL team and I still feel that way. The Latvian's speed is already at a NHL level and his hands aren't far behind.
That said, I do hope that the Oilers send Pelss back to the Oil Kings for the 2012-13 season. Not only is the WHL club going to be strong next year than this season but I don't think the player is ready for the next level just yet. That's not to say that he won't ever be, I just think he'd benefit from an overage year in junior on what should be a dominant team.
The Pelss signing still leaves Edmonton with 3 prospects to make a decision on before June 1st. See the link above for my thoughts on them.