Barons GM, Bill Scott, announced today that the team has signed Alaska Aces left shooting defenseman, Kane Lafranchise to an AHL PTO. Lafranchise is an Edmonton born defender who spent three years with the University of Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves where he’d play 30+ games a season. In that span, he’d earn 33 points. Since turning pro in the 2010-2011 season, Lafranchise has 60 points in the ECHL. This season, in particular, he’s played well against the Oilers affiliate in Stockton.
This is an interesting decision for OKC. Bill Scott has chosen to apparently upgrade the defensive side of the puck by adding a guy with virtually no AHL experience. But before we get too bent out of shape over this one, remember how well Scott has scouted, signed, and managed ECHL players that eventually land in OKC. Anthony Aiello, Dan Ringwald, and Dylan Yeo all spent time in the ECHL prior to coming to Oklahoma City. All were important parts of the Barons success in the seasons they were signed. Add to the fray, Bryan Helmer and Bryan Rodney, and Scott hasn’t done too badly in finding mid-season or late-season acquisitions that add key pieces that bettered Oklahoma City’s chances at the blue line (okay, Rodney may have been the one irksome signing, but the point remains). You could also make the case that the freshman season trade of Shawne Bell for Kevin Montgomery did aid the Barons for a duration, and gave the team more of what it needed in a consistent defender.
Over the last three seasons, I’ve given a lot of credit to Bill Scott. Rarely has he mangled the lineup when given a chance to improve it greatly. The diamond in the rough approach to scout and sign really good ingredients for success has me intrigued. Will the Barons and Scott strike icy gold with Lafranchise. I have no reason to think otherwise.
The Oklahoma City Barons signed defenseman Kane Lafranchise to a Professional Tryout, General Manager Bill Scott announced today.
Lafranchise, a 6-1, 195-pounder from Edmonton, Alberta has played each of the last three seasons with the Alaska Aces of the ECHL. In 121 games with the Aces, Lafranchise has scored 60 points (7-53-60) while serving 40 penalty minutes.
Prior to turning pro, Lafranchise played three seasons with the University of Alaska-Anchorage. Over those three seasons, he played in 97 games, scoring 33 points (9-24-33). He played two-plus seasons with the Spruce Grove Saints of the Alberta Junior Hockey League. In 119 games, he scored 55 points (19-36-55).