Philadelphia Flyers draft hockey player from Ogre

Eighteen-year-old Oskars Bārtulis, a native of the Latvian city of Ogre, has joined the Philadelphia Flyers as a third-round pick in the National Hockey League draft July 30 in Ottawa, Canada.

Bārtulis, a left-handed defenseman, is the eighth Latvia-born hockey player to be drafted into an NHL team since 2000.

Bārtulis played during the past season with the Moncton Wildcats of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and was named to the league’s All-Rookie Team. Before that, he played in Russia.

The team’s scouting report on Bārtulis called him a good skater and said he is “strong both forward and backward with a smooth, effortless stride, good agility and lateral movement.”

The NHL, whose 2004 season was canceled because of a continuing labor dispute between players and the league, will put all 30 teams into competition when the 2005 season opens Oct. 5. Philadelphia will play a home game against the New York Rangers.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

3 thoughts on “Philadelphia Flyers draft hockey player from Ogre

  1. Oscars Bartulis will return to the Moncton Wildcats of the QMJHL as a junior for the 2005-2006 season. He could also return the following season as an over-age junior. Eligibility in Canada’s three top-flight junior leagues (Quebec, Ontario and Western) is based on a player’s age as of January 1. If they’re under 20 on that date then they can play in the current and next season (which starts in the fall and ends the following spring) as a junior. Bartulis was born on January 21. That means he could still play junior in the 2006-2007 season. Most likely Philadelphia would by that time move him to their American Hockey League (AHL) farm team, the Philadelphia Phantoms or possibly one level lower to their East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) affiliate, the Trenton Titans. So don’t go rushing out to buy Flyers tickets unless you want to see Mike Knuble. He was born in Toronto and is of Latvian descent but grew up in Michigan and is a US national. He has matured into a top NHL forward. Prior to the NHL lock-out he spent 5 seasons with the Boston Bruins before signing with Philadelphia. He spent last season in Sweden during the NHL lock-out. Unfortunately, he plays on the US rather than the Latvian national team. Knuble does not have Latvian citizenship and even if he did, he has already played for another country making any move ineligible.

  2. Who are the current Latvian hockey players in the NHL, and what teams will they be playing for this coming season?

  3. With the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, it’s a new ball-game and we’ll have to wait until the dust settles. So far Karlis Skrastins has re-signed with the Colorado Avalanche, Sandis Ozolins is with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks while Arturs Irbe is a free agent and may have difficulty signing a contract. Enforcer Raitis Ivanans is one level below in the Montreal Canadiens farm system and could get to see NHL action. While there are a other prospects in the minors, it’s unlikely they’ll play in the NHL this season.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *