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Goalie World Mourns Passing of Matiss Kivlenieks

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InGoal Magazine, the goalie union, and entire hockey world was shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Mattis Kivlenieks on Monday. 

The 24-year-old Latvian died after a tragic fireworks accident in Novi, Michigan on Sunday night. The Blue Jackets and Latvian Hockey Federation announced Kivlenieks’ death, and an outpouring of support and prayers for friends, family and teammates of the young goalie quickly followed on social media.

“Life is so precious and can be so fragile,” 

Columbus general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said in a tweet. “Hug your loved ones today. RIP Matiss, you will be dearly missed.” 

Kivlenieks, who is from Riga, represented Latvia at the World Junior Championships in 2015 and 2016 and most recently at the 2021 World Championship, playing four games. 

Undrafted, Kivlenieks signed with the Blue Jackets as a free agent in May 2017 and played eight NHL games for the club over four seasons, including two this past season. He spent most of his time with Cleveland in the American Hockey League, where he played with and was coached by Brad Thiessen. 

InGoal Magazine joins everyone in the goalie world in expressing our condolences to Kivlenieks family, friends and teammates at this difficult time. Rest In Peace, Mattis.