Alex Lavoie Released From PTO. LaBarbera On Waivers. Defender Edmonton Bound?

Photo by Steven Christy

Two organizational transactions emerged before lunchtime today. One for the Barons. One for the Oilers. Both effecting each club greatly.

Brought in briefly from the Allen Americans of the CHL, centerman Alex Lavoie has officially been released from his PTO by Oklahoma City. Playing in only one game, and playing surprisingly well, Lavoie is a guy that the Barons (and fans) liked in training camp. The small, but sturdy 21 year old, has only suited up fourteen professional games since leaving the QMJHL only a season ago. Thirteen of those games have been with the Central League Americans where he has potted five goals and eleven assists in only sixteen games. In protected minutes on Saturday, Lavoie sparkled occasionally, but that’s likely because he was centering the better-than-expected Matt Ford and AHL vet Ryan Hamilton. Mistakes were few, and his game was sturdy.

His release means that Anton Lander’s ankle injury was indeed only a “cut and scrape” situation. He will be back, and that’s good.

The Oilers announced today that Jason LaBarbera was placed on waivers. With the back up of goaltenders in the Oilers pipeline, the best possible outcome for the Oilers would be for Jason to be picked up, which isn’t entirely out of the scope of our imagination. Predators? Kings? Might LaBarbera be a good fit in those places. Absolutely he would.

If (and that’s a big if) the Oilers lose LaBarbera the goaltending crunch isn’t quite as horrific. Bunz will remain number one in Oklahoma City until Richard Bachman is healthy enough to be placed on the farm. In the meantime, the Barons could call on the services of Laurent Broissoit if the Oilers fancy his game. Yet there are other options in Ty Rimmer and Chet Pickard. Lots of prospects means lots of interesting options. We. Will. See.

In other news:

The farm options are pretty familiar – Fedun, Marincin, Grebeshkov – all capable in a callup situation except for Marincin who has yet to skate in an NHL game in his career. The darkhorse might be Oscar Klefbom who you’ll recall was, er, um recalled to Edmonton “just in case” only days ago. Regardless, a defender moving out of Oklahoma City means that Gernat and Musil both get to start, and certainly gain more experience. That’s a good thing for them, but also an anxious thought knowing that a giant Barons road swing is forthcoming.

Moves are good, but more than that it is always interesting to see how each move effects the net outcome of games. Let the chess match begin.