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Body of Oilers' prospect Pelss identified

The SportsXchange

Latvian news agencies on Saturday confirmed that a body recovered from the Daugava River late Friday is Edmonton Oilers prospect Kristians Pelss

Pells had gone missing earlier in the week. Police received reports that a man had jumped off a bridge around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday and authorities believed that man to be Pelss.

The Edmonton Oilers released a statement after Pelss' death was confirmed.

"This is the news we feared. Kristians was an outstanding man and we feel terrible he has left us at such a young age," said Oilers General Manager Craig MacTavish. "I can't imagine how painful this situation is for the Pelss family. On behalf of everyone working at the Oilers, Oil Kings and our affiliate teams, as well as all of our fans, I offer our most sincere and deepest condolences to his family and friends."

The 20-year-old Pelss was a seventh-round draft pick of the Oilers in 2010.

He played his junior hockey for the Edmonton Oil Kings of the Western Hockey League and made his pro hockey debut this past season, splitting time with the Stockton Thunder of the ECHL and Edmonton's AHL team in Oklahoma City.

In 20 games in the AHL Pelss scored one goal to go with seven assists.

He had arrived in his hometown of Riga only on Monday.

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