PELSS

Lowetide
February 13 2013 10:24PM

Do the Edmonton Oilers have something in Kristian Pelss? Will he score enough to have a pro career? Can he make the NHL?

Several years ago, the Edmonton Oilers drafted Kyle Brodziak in the deep dark recesses (214th overall) of the draft, and it paid off (although they dealt him too soon). Brodziak was drafted in 2003, turned pro in 2004 and became an NHL regular in 2007 fall. Brodziak worked his way past a mile of first rounders with hard work on the penalty kill and at evens, and made himself into a useful NHL player during 173 AHL games.

His first AHL season? 56, 6-26-32 .571, no screaming hell.

Three years ago in June, the Edmonton Oilers drafted Kristians Pelss in the deep dark recesses (181st overall) of the draft, and it might pay off down the line. Pelss was drafted in 2010, turned pro in 2012 and became an AHL regular when all the NHL players left Dodge City.

Pelss is 14, 0-6-6 .429 since his recall from Stockton.

WHAT ELSE ABOUT PELSS?

  • Stu MacGregor: “Now, he’s interesting. I think he could fit into the Oilers plans in a role as a high energy guy who can skate. I was at the World U-18 with Oil Kings general manager Bob Green when we both saw the kid. Frank Musil did some clandestine work to see if he’d come over to play for the Oil Kings. Knowing that, I figured ‘Let’s take a swing at this guy.’ We even had to add him to the Central Scouting draft list so we could pick him. When you do that he only appears on your list.”
  • Todd Nelson: “He’s way more responsible defensively that I gave him credit for. He has tremendous speed but part of his game that I didn’t know he had was his grit. He has to play and get the minutes but I think he has an opportunity to be a third- or fourth-line penalty-kill role player in the NHL.”

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

The heart of the 2010 draft is spending the season in OKC. Second rounders Tyler Pitlick, Martin Marincin and Curtis Hamilton are getting the majority of the attention (good and bad), but guys like Ryan Martindale and Kristians Pelss are developing and earning playing time.

Kristians Pelss is a gritty, 2-way forward with some offensive ability and he is posting numbers in the AHL. Pelss is a long shot for the NHL, but so was Brodziak.

He's a name to remember.

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#1 TLHansum
February 13 2013, 11:15PM
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cant wait to see him in his FIST nhl game

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#2 a lg dubl dubl
February 13 2013, 11:24PM
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I hope Pelss can make it, Oilers are going to need a player or 3 like him in the bottom 6 once the likes of Horcoff, Belanger, and Smyth ride off into the sunset. Plus I always liked a really late pick making it to the nhl on hard work.

I still think the line of Brodziak, Glencross, and Stortini was one of the better 4th lines the Oilers put together in ages.

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#3 Dsylxesic
February 14 2013, 02:03AM
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Sometimes I am dyslexic. In this case I was wondering why you would write an article about Willie Pless on a hockey blog.

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#4 Samivan01
February 14 2013, 02:17AM
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Vancouver media are such arrogant pric-s. I grew up in Edmonton but moved to Vancouver. The oilers are my team. I know they aren't the best team right now but I hope they improve quickly. I was listening to team 1040 sports station in Vancouver and was shocked at how cocky they are. They we're bragging how the Canucks had already locked up the division at the13 game mark. They started to slag the oilers,flames and wild by calling the division a'craphole'. I want to punch those mealy mouthed little wimps so bad. Anyways, how about someone passing this onto the oilers website so they can get angry for their next canucks game?

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#5 Randall Shermer
February 14 2013, 02:18AM
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a lg dubl dubl wrote:

I hope Pelss can make it, Oilers are going to need a player or 3 like him in the bottom 6 once the likes of Horcoff, Belanger, and Smyth ride off into the sunset. Plus I always liked a really late pick making it to the nhl on hard work.

I still think the line of Brodziak, Glencross, and Stortini was one of the better 4th lines the Oilers put together in ages.

Good, but not as good as Horcoff Murray Laraque.

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#6 MICHAEL
February 14 2013, 09:01AM
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Reminds me of a Pat Hughes/Todd Marchant kinda player. Has the wheels,the skill and the grit to be the same kind of player. More likely we see Pelss than Hamilton. Pelss has game. When he was with the Oil Kings he had some moments where you would say Oh My! definitely has NHL caliber speed. Needs to pound the weight room. Like any young man it takes time to put on weight/muscle. Look at RNH. I've got a dog with more meat on its bones than RNH has. But when time and physical maturity finally meet RNH should fill out to a plump 180 lbs. Time is what Pelss will need to grow s a player. He needs at least 2 more seasons in the AHL to get that maturity and then we'll see him lighting up the penalty kill and 3rd-4th line minutes.

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#7 Phixieus666
February 14 2013, 09:08AM
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All fun a good but we need guys like this right now. Or one of our stars is going to get his ankle cut and there will be no retaliation.

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#8 Phixieus666
February 14 2013, 09:09AM
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Is Antti Tyrvainen almost ready?????

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#9 dessert1111
February 14 2013, 10:16AM
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I tend to forget about him until I see him play. I've seen him in about 10 games now and he has played with consistent effort, won puck battles, and not looked bad offensively. It's a big jump from the A but he's a good hockey player, so I can absolutely see it happening.

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#10 westcoastoil
February 14 2013, 11:15AM
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Didn't SMB once dub him his "little Latvian ball of hate"? There is always room in the line up for that gritty PK role if he can make/take a pass. Kinda sounds like he'll be Petrell version 2.0

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#11 The Other Ron Burgundy
February 14 2013, 01:04PM
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Is that 80s goddess Morgan Fairchild?

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#12 Zipdot
February 14 2013, 03:52PM
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Pelss, Rieder, and Rajala are all going to be NHL players imo. They each have that quality and just need to keep on trucking.

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#13 Dog Train
February 14 2013, 04:36PM
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Pretty interesting that this guy was so off the board that the Oilers had to actually get his name added to the CSS board. I'm all for an underdog story and there is certainly room for turnover in our bottom 6 in the next few seasons.

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#15 Rocknrolla
February 14 2013, 08:07PM
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westcoastoil wrote:

Didn't SMB once dub him his "little Latvian ball of hate"? There is always room in the line up for that gritty PK role if he can make/take a pass. Kinda sounds like he'll be Petrell version 2.0

Best nickname ever...."Latvian Ball of Hate!"

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