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VALERI ZELEPUKIN #21
Left Wing
Born: Sep 17, 1968
Voskresensk, RUS
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 180 lbs
Shoots: Left
Selected by New-Jersey Devils in Round 11 (#221 overall) in 1990 NHL Entry Draft.
Missed majority of 1994-95 season recovering from eye injury suffered in practice, January 24, 1995.
Traded to Edmonton along with Bill Guerin for Jason Arnott and Bryan Muir, January 4, 1998.
Traded to Philadelphia by Edmonton for Daniel Lacroix, October 5, 1998.

 
Valeri Zelepukin #21
 OILERS' STATS:
 SEASON:
GP
G
A
PTS
PIM
 1997-98
33
2
10
12
57
 TOTALS:
33
2
10
12
57
 PLAYOFFS:
GP
G
A
PTS
PIM
 1997-98
8
1
2
3
2
 TOTALS:
8
1
2
3
2
He made his NHL debut with the Devils against the Hartford Whalers on December 19, 1991, and scored his first goal a week later against the New York Islanders.
Prior to his NHL career Zelepukin played with Khimik in the Soviet league and toured NHL cities with his club team in 1989, 1990 and 1991.  In International Hockey he represented the Soviet Union at the 1988 World Junior Hockey Championship and at the 1991 World Hockey Championship.  He was also a member of the Russian team during the 1996 World Cup of Hockey and the 1998 Olympic Games, where he was a silver medallist.
Four games into the 1995 season Zelepukin suffered an eye injury during a Devils practice that kept him out of the lineup for the balance of the regular season.  He recovered sufficiently to return for the playoffs and appeared in 18 games as the Devils went on to win the Stanley Cup.
Essentially he was the prototypical New Jersey Devil, but his offensive output dropped off dramatically after his injury.  His statistical maladies, coupled with the depth of two-way talent on the Devils, led to his being packaged in a four-player deal to Edmonton on January 4, 1998.
His stay with the Oilers was short-lived and he was on the move again, this time to Philadelphia, just prior to the start of the 1998-99 season.