EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers retrieved a prized prospect in signing Jesse Puljujarvi to a two-year contract.
The fourth overall pick by Edmonton in the 2016 NHL entry draft split his first three pro seasons in North America between the Oilers and the club's American Hockey League affiliate.
The forward chose not to re-sign with the Oilers last summer and played in the Finnish elite league with Karpat instead.
Oilers general manager Ken Holland indicated this week that he and head coach Dave Tippett, who were both hired in 2019, had embarked on relationship-building conversations with the 22-year-old Finn and his agent in hopes Puljujarvi pronounced (poo -lee -AHR -vee) would return to the Oilers.
The NHL isn't expected to open the 2020-21 season before Jan. 1, so the Oilers have lent Puljujarvi back to Karpat for now.
Puljujarvi led Karpat in scoring, and ranked fourth in the league, with 24 goals and 29 assists in 56 games in 2019-20. He has a goal in two games this season.
The six-foot-four, 201-pound forward compiled 17 goals and 20 assists in 139 games with the Oilers. He collected 15 goals and 22 assists in 53 AHL games.
Puljujarvi won gold medals with his country's junior and under-18 teams in 2016.
He was named most valuable player of the world junior championships and led that tournament in points with five goals and 12 assists in seven games.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 7, 2020.
The Canadian Press