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Yakupov arrives in Edmonton late Wednesday

by Ryan Dittrick / Edmonton Oilers
EDMONTON - Nail Yakupov’s career as an Edmonton Oiler is about to begin. The 5'11", 185-pound right-winger arrived in Edmonton late Wednesday night in preparation for camp, which is expected to open with fitness and medical testing Sunday at Rexall Place.

The 19-year-old spent the NHL/NHLPA’s 113-day-long labour dispute with Nizhnekamsk of the Kontinental Hockey League, scoring 10 goals and 18 points in 22 games. Yakupov also represented Team Russia at the 2012 Subway Super Series and 2013 World Junior Championship in Ufa.

Collecting three goals, eight points and a +2 rating in seven games, Yakupov helped lead Russia to a Bronze Medal win over Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Team Canada.

With Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Justin Schultz and others already at his disposal, Head Coach Ralph Krueger is excited to see what Yakupov will bring to the Oilers.

"We know the skill-set of Nail Yakupov and we're excited," he said. "I really got to know him well at our Development Camp and I'm extremely optimistic about his passion to be a winner, to be a competitor and to be an Oiler. And to be a really great Oiler."

Yakupov, who will wear No. 64 with the Oilers, has been assigned a locker stall next to veterans Ladislav Smid and Ales Hemsky. Informal practice sessions are scheduled to continue throughout the week at Rexall Place.

-- Ryan Dittrick, | Follow me on Twitter @ryandittrick

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