SAN JOSE, CA - (Jan. 12, 2021) - San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) General Manager Doug Wilson announced today that the club has claimed forward Rudolfs Balcers (@rudolfsbalcers) off of waivers from the Ottawa Senators.
Balcers, 23, appeared in 15 games with Ottawa during the 2019-20 season, scoring one goal, two assists, and 23 shots on goal. In 33 American Hockey League (AHL) games with Belleville, Balcers recorded 36 points (16 goals, 20 assists) and a plus-20 rating. He ranked tied for second on the team in plus/minus, tied for fifth in goals, and sixth in points, and was named to the 2020 AHL All-Star Classic.
During the 2017-18 season, Balcers led the San Jose Barracuda (@sjbarracuda), the Sharks AHL affiliate, in points (48), goals (23), shots on goal (165), and finished second in assists (25). He was named to the 2018 AHL All-Star Game and led the Barracuda in playoff points (4), scoring two goals and two assists in four games.
In 51 career NHL games, all with Ottawa, Balcers has registered 17 points (six goals, 11 assists) and 71 shots on goal. The forward has appeared in 143 career AHL games with Belleville and the Barracuda, posting 115 points (56 goals, 59 assists) with a plus-8 rating and 338 shots on goal.
Balcers spent the 2016-17 season with the Kamloops Blazers of the Western Hockey League (WHL), recording 77 points (40 goals, 37 assists) in 66 games. Amongst all WHL rookies, Balcers ranked first in goals, fourth in assists, third in points, and first in game-winning goals (7).
Before joining the WHL, Balcers spent time with the Stavanger Oilers of the Norwegian League. In 79 games, from 2014 to 2016, he registered 23 goals, 22 assists, and a plus-38 rating. He helped the Oilers win the Championship in both of those seasons (2014-15, 2015-16).
In addition, Balcers helped his native Latvia win gold medals at the D1A World Junior Championships in 2013-14 (U18) and 2015-16 (U20), and represented his country in the World Jr. Championships (2017) as well as two World Championships (2019, 2018).
The five-foot-eleven, 180-pound native of Liepaja, Latvia was selected by San Jose in the fifth round (142nd overall) of the 2015 NHL Draft.