Curtis Hamilton To Have ACL Surgery, Nathan Deck To Stockton

AHL Hockey: Mar 20 Barons Buddies at Andy Alligator's
Any excuse to use this picture, right? Photo by Steven Christy.

It’s an odd time for some serious announcements from the Oklahoma City Barons given that the present focus is clearly on the upcoming semifinal match-up with the potent Texas Stars. Important news is important news, and even in a busy week’s worth of playoff prep, things happen that directly effect the team, and the not-to-distant future.

Curtis Hamilton, the winger with the world on his shoulders, has a torn ACL and will have surgery tomorrow morning.

This is a huge blow for Hamilton, in his second year as a pro, mainly because injuries have been a pretty big deal for the young Oilers prospect. A double-fractured collarbone prior to turning pro, a 2012 season where he missed a ton of games with an injury, and now an ACL situation – he just can’t get a break, and it comes as at a critical time in his young career. At just over one hundred professional games, he’s only mustered twenty points, and in limited minutes for much of the 2012-2013 campaign. That’s a brutal total for a kid who Oilers fans pegged as a potential to wear the NHL orange and blue.

This injury, which apparently occurred weeks ago, is now the focus of Curtis’ prospect growth. Moving forward he needs to burn the red flag on his health, make giant leaps offensively, and maybe grab hold of a tiny bit of luck. I still feel that he has the talent, I’m not sure we see it regularly.

The other newsworthy transaction places Nathan Deck, who’s returning from an injury himself, back with the Stockton Thunder who are in a postseason run of their own. The Deck move is interesting because he might be someone that could really be beneficial to the Oklahoma City Barons in the upcoming series with the Texas Stars. You’ll recall that Colten Teubert has been benched for the puck-mover Andrew Hotham in a 5/6 defensive pairing. Deck, a much better puck mover in my estimation, might have been a quality option if Hotham continues to stumble (as he did in the final game against Charlotte; despite scoring a late goal). Good on Nathan for getting some PT this postseason, but he might be a better fit in the AHL over the ECHL. We’ll see.