Young Latvian goaltender Janis Voris has his heart set on a jump to North America and he’s being proactive about it. KHL squad Dinamo Riga announced today that they have suspended the contract of the 18-year-old netminder so that he may pursue other options overseas. The two sides mutually agreed that he should explore options in North America to further his development.
Voris played in all but six games for Riga’s youth team in the MHL last season, posting a .907 save percentage and 2.81 GAA in 58 contests against some of the best young players in Russia and Eastern Europe. He was also one the major highlights of the U-18 World Juniors 1A tournament, where he turned in an incredible .969 save percentage and 0.67 GAA in three games.
With Latvia’s top pro goaltender and former NHLer Kristers Gudlevskis returning home to man the net at the KHL level for the foreseeable future, as well as two other veteran keepers on the roster, Voris likely did not have much of a path to tougher competition in his current situation. However, his talent demands more of a challenge. Although Voris was not selected this past June in his first year of NHL Draft eligibility, he could be an intriguing option for an NHL team to sign to an entry-level contract and let develop at the junior level for several years. At the very least, the young goalie should find a new home in the junior ranks in no time.