The Philadelphia Flyers announced that they have signed 6'2", 190-pound defenseman Oskars Bartulis (AWHS-kahrs bahr-TEW-lihs) to a three-year Entry Level contract, according to club Assistant General Manager Paul Holmgren. Per club policy, financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are extremely excited about having him signed," said Holmgren in making the announcement. "We thought that he was one of the top young defensemen in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League last season and he certainly should be one of the top defensemen in that league this season. We look for big things from him this year and big things from him in the future.
"He has really good size and still has room to grow. He is an extremely good skater and is very good with the puck. He showed what he is capable of doing when he played in the last two preseason games with the Philadelphia Phantoms (the Flyers' American Hockey League affiliate) against the Lowell Devils. He can play big minutes and is a good young prospect."
Bartulis, 19, will play for the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles (QMJHL) this season. He recorded six goals and 25 assists for 31 points and 84 penalty minutes in 54 games for the Moncton Wildcats last season. In 21 playoff games, Bartulis posted 10 points (1G,9A) and 22 penalty minutes as the Wildcats won the QMJHL Regular Season and Playoff Championships and advanced to the Memorial Cup Finals. He was scoreless in three games as a member of Team Latvia at the 2006 IIHF World Junior Championships.
In two seasons with Moncton (2004-05 and 2005-06), Bartulis registered 11 goals and 44 assists for 55 points and 139 penalty minutes in 116 regular season games. He was named to the QMJHL All-Rookie Team and the Canadian Major Junior All-Rookie Team after recording five goals and 19 assists for 24 points and 55 penalty minutes in 62 games for Moncton during the 2004-05 season.
A native of Ogre, Latvia, Bartulis was originally drafted from Moncton by the Flyers in the third round (91st overall) of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.