BBG&CS: Abney & the Fall of Rome, Advanced Stats, Salary Cap going UP, Refs, Swedish Goalies, and is this IKEA or a Swedish Hockey Player?

Cameron Abney Takes on The World!!! (courtesy of the Bakersfield Condors) — For old movie buffs, Abney has always reminded me a bit of Victor Mature (in Samson and Delilah, 1949) — a man with a strong jaw, incredibly cheesy, but also impressive at times. On the other hand, this particular photo reminds me of Thomas Cole’s painting The Course of Empire: Destruction, 1836, which portrayed the destruction of the Roman Empire.

| Jonathan Willis takes us on a tour of the world of advanced stats and discusses the role of chance — “Every team’s record is a combination of true talent level and chance.”

“The best way to predict the future record is to, as much as possible, remove chance from the equation. This is what “advanced” statistics attempt to do. They provide unbiased fact, though of course there remains room for bias in interpretation. They provide better information than the outmoded numbers that too many still rely on. And, most importantly, they try to reduce the noise and isolate the true talent levels of teams and players. That’s why those numbers are important, not only for analysts but also for fans; they provide good information and can enhance understanding of the game.” — via Jonathan Willis at Bleacher Report.

| With the increase in revenue from the recent Canadian TV deals, the NHL salary cap is going UP!

“The NHL salary cap is projected to rise to more than $71 million in the 2014-15 season, TSN’s Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger reported Monday. […] The projection would be about a $7 million rise from 2013-14 level of $64.3 million. It would also be the highest salary-cap level in NHL history.” — via Sports Illustrated SI Wire. See also: Stephen Whyno, The Canadian Press.

| Here is a former NHL referee’s take on Shawn Thornton. If you have not read Paul Stewart’s blog, check it out occasionally. It’s well worth the read for a former NHL referee’s viewpoint:

“My take on this: Thornton went after the wrong guy for the wrong thing.” — via Paul Stewart, HockeyBuzz.

| James Mirtle explores the decline of Canadian goalies and visits Sweden to investigate how they are doing it better:

“Canadian goalies, long the dominant stoppers in the game, have slowly been disappearing from the NHL, losing jobs to their European and American counterparts. And with the 2014 Winter Olympics fast approaching, the country that produced such superstars as Patrick Roy, Martin Brodeur and Ed Belfour now frets over who will mind its net in Sochi.” — via James Mirtle, The Globe and Mail.

| Is this a piece of IKEA furniture, or a Swedish Hockey Player? You take the test!

“[…] many of the items I saw in [IKEA] reminded me of Swedish hockey player names…. I’ve put together the below quiz, asking you to differentiate between professional Swedish hockey players and IKEA furniture.” — via Sam Page, Extra Mustard.

___________

– You know that place in The Daily Oklahoman? The one between Big Game & Club Soccer? That’s where you may find some Barons coverage. For the rest of the news, check out BBG&CS every weekend. –

Richard Bachman Returned To Oklahoma City, Rimmer To Quad City

Photo by Steven Christy

It’s been a while since The Biz has been in Oklahoma City. Heck, it’s been a while since he’s played at all. Following a groin injury in early November with the Oilers where he was off to a pretty fantastic NHL start, Richard Bachman would be sidelines for the better part of six weeks. His return, which starts in Oklahoma City, brings about some resemblance of moving forward at three levels of the Oilers organization.

The Oilers can finally remove him from the IR, and hopefully begin to use him. The injury bug bit Ilya Bryzgalov too, and the Oilers really need to start seeing some return on a few of their investments. Bachman is one of those supposedly high-yield players even though he was originally positioned at number three in the goaltending depth chart to start the season (Dubnyk, LaBarbera, Bachman).

Laurent Brossoit and Ty Rimmer are currently the go-to fellas in Oklahoma City. Brossoit looked great, and then didn’t en route to giving the reins to Rimmer who, out of the gate, looks pretty great himself. However, we’ve been down this path before. With the introduction of Bachman to the AHL roster, it has necessitated a move of one of those two tenders. Ironically Rimmer has been returned to the Quad City Mallards of the CHL. That leaves Brossoit, and his entirely promising career as an Oilers goaltender (or at least hot/cold right now).

NHL contracted Tyler Bunz and AHL contracted Chet Pickard remain in other destinations, but likely candidates for call-ups when needed. It really is fantastically goofy to see how the Oilers went from two goaltending prospects a season ago to a good helping of them this season (with the two from the previous season either gone or down the totem pole).

The transactions will continue to hit us like that tidal wave in the coming days, but as it stands (Thanks Patricia!) the Oilers season transactions as of December 10th are at 79. An incredible number for early December, no doubt. Who might be #100? Post forthcoming on that very topic.

In the meantime, welcome back Richard Bachman and farewell Ty Rimmer. Both are classy fellas.

Tyler Pitlick Is Healthy! Assigned To Oklahoma City

Announced this morning, Tyler Pitlick has been assigned to Oklahoma City. Seven games in the AHL, three games in the NHL, Tyler Pitlick was having a pretty good start to his 2013-14 season until October 26th rolled around, and a knee injury sidelined him from play.

This is good news for the Oilers.

He can finally come off the IR. They can see how he fares in the minors. Perhaps he can return to solid training camp form. A lot has changed since the knee injury occurred, but MacTavish and Eakins will likely watch him very closely, and eagerly welcome him back if he “shows good”.

This is good news for Oklahoma City.

Before his brief three game NHL stint, Pitlick scored three points in seven games for OKC. It isn’t necessarily the points that the Barons need, nor his offensive capabilities. Instead, they really would like some familiarity on this squad, and perhaps some consistency. I’m a bit bullish on Tyler, have been for a while, and will likely continue to be, but there’s no denying that the Barons need A) consistency, B) more offense, and C) offensive players helping the defense. Pitlick can do those things, the question is will he?

Oklahoma City Splits Two Games In Chicago, Team Still Under .500

Two games. Same opponent. Nearly two wins for the Oklahoma City Barons. Three points rewarded. That’s not a bad. Considering how unsightly the Barons have been in the last ten games, stealing three out of four on Saturday and Sunday is a bit of a victory in and of itself. With Christmas rapidly approaching, the Barons are looking to go full steam ahead in the face of a challenging lineup and ever changing roster.

The Oklahoma City Barons split two games with the Chicago Wolves this weekend, yet the team still remains under .500.

The Wolves are in the same boat, rowing a similar direction as the Barons. A struggle of a season, they have been challenged with consistent hockey play. So when the two met it really was a roll of the dice when it came to picking a victor.

Goaltending was going to be huge for both squads, and we saw two really great tenders in Chicago, and one suddenly successful prospect for Oklahoma City. The two-some of Matt Climie and Jake Allen should be way more head strong than they have been, but to quote every coach on the planet, “that’s why we play the games”. Indeed. For Oklahoma City, Laurent Brossoit has been sullied with a high GAA the last couple of outings, and that was enough to bench him, and bring in Ty Rimmer. He was really good for two straight nights facing 41 shots on Saturday and 39 on Sunday. Welcome to the OKC Barons circa 2013-14, kid. He would only give up seven goals in that span, and although not earth shattering, it was just enough.

Game one featured an opening goal by Barons defender, Brad Hunt, but quickly would turn in to a chess match. From the Hunt power play goal scored at the 6:34 mark of the first period, no goals would exist until the explosion of offense in the third period. Ironically it was the Wolves that would notch two straight goals in the first eight minutes of the third period to open the flood gates. However, Oklahoma City would score four goals (two empty netters) in the final six minutes of the game to win the game with ferocity. Roman Horak scored a pair, Matt Ford and Andrew Miller one a piece.

Although four Barons scored, and four players had multiple point nights, it was Ty Rimmer that stole the show. He only let in two goals on 41 shots (including sixteen in the third period alone), and was really a big part of the second period shutdown. The Wolves owned the offensive zone possession, and that was bothersome. However, for the first time in several weeks, a Barons goaltender wins one on their own.

Less than 24 hours later, the two teams squared off again, but the Barons would come up just short. A ping-pong like affair was in order as Linus Omark added to his goal totals for the season. Oklahoma City scored first, on the Barons power play, but Chicago would roar back with two of their own. With the seconds ticking away on the first period, Linus Omark scored his second of the period to put the Barons even with the Wolves. Roman Horak would get a power play goal of his own, his third in two games, and it felt like maybe, just maybe, OKC would gain control of the lead and keep it. We know better. Ty Rattie would score his seventh of the season with seven minutes remaining in the game. Ryan Hamilton would tie it up with his third goal since becoming a Baron. Ty Rattie, in a last ditch effort by the Wolves, would score the game-tying goal with nearly fifteen seconds remaining in regulation. A lazy-dazy OT led to a shootout where the Barons would again go scoreless. The Wolves only needed to beat Rimmer once, and the win would go to Chicago.

The Barons earn a point in the final game after winning two the night before. Four out of four would have been nice, but…baby steps.

Next up! Oklahoma City plays another three games in three days road swing through Milwaukee and Rockford. Both opponents are above .500 themselves, but

BBG&CS: Oilers, NHL’s Youngest Scout, Mitch Korn, Courage, Burning Bridges & Thugs

To quote Lowetide, “Oh those Oilers!” Just when you think they are back on the right path they hit yet another rock bottom. The good news — their stats were great last night! The bad news — they are still losing. And let’s face it, winning is what really counts in this game, no matter the glowing stats. If you are a star on a team, and want to be remembered as a star years down the road, you have to play 24/7 like a star and this top crop of Oilers is not doing that. Having seen a few of these boys down in OKC during the lockout we saw a bit of this same attitude — a couple of them have a tendency to play selfishly. Spoiled, selfish and overindulged. This is Sam Gagner’s seventh season with the Oilers, Taylor Hall’s and Jordan Eberle’s fourth, and RNH’s third season. No more excuses. And it is time to STOP calling these boys “young stars” — they have not yet earned that right.

| 99.9% of all Oilers fans have been against a top-line player trade … I’ve been with that .1% … trade one. Now.:

“The Edmonton Oilers are going to finish last with Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Sam Gagner and Justin Schultz, they can sure as hell finish last without them.” — via Lowetide at OilersNation.

| And the selfish play part ….

“It’s hard to watch a guy like Arcobello on one shift – a guy who probably isn’t going to be a pivotal part of the Oilers future – and then watch one of the young stars on the next and know that the former is playing a 200-foot game and the latter are looking to fly the zone at the first opportunity. ” — via Jonathan Willis at OilersNation.

| Moving along to other (and better!) hockey news … the NHL’s youngest scout:

“Now, after multiple concussions while at the University of Maine limited him to just 64 of a possible 168 NCAA games, he is working for the Flyers as the youngest full-time scout in the NHL at age 23.” — via Frank Seravalli at Philly.com.

| If you are unfamiliar with Nashville Predators goalie guru Mitch Korn, you’d best catch up!

“Just look at all the goalie coaches around the league who are disciples of Korn – or like Predators head coach Barry Trotz likes to say, “Children of the Korn. Mike Valley (Dallas), Corey Hirsch (St. Louis), Clint Malarchuk (Calgary), Olaf Kolzig (Washington), Mike Dunham (N.Y. Islanders), Wade Flaherty (Winnipeg) and Mike Bales (Pittsburgh) all learned from Korn.” — via Tim Wharnsby at CBCSports.

| It’s about Courage:

“Courage Canada Hockey for the Blind was founded by Mark DeMontis, who was a top AAA hockey player in Toronto and had aspirations of an NCAA scholarship when he got older. But DeMontis lost his sight at age 17, and that led him to start up Courage Canada. A large metal puck with ball bearings inside to make a constant noise is used for the hockey games. “We use hockey as a catylist — if you have the courage to go on the ice, then you have the courage to do other things in life,” said DeMontis, 26.” — via John Coleburn at The Province.

| Mike Commodore continues to burn bridges:

“Fifteen minutes into free agency my agent calls me and tells me that Detroit called. They offered me a contract. I had a bad history with Mike Babcock, I didn’t want to have anything to do with him. He tried and succeeded in burying me in the minors in my third pro year, but I got out of it. I wanted nothing to do with him.” — via Danijel Jelenek/Krešimir Biškup at KHL.HR.

| And of course, Shawn Thornton, James Neal, Zac Rinaldo and Ray Emery:

“The rules need to change to give the league the power to – and no excuse not to – suspend the next Emery; there is plenty in the rule book to suspend Thornton. It will help Thornton that he has not been suspended before, but it will hurt him that Orpik was injured. Six games appears to be the minimum here, but it should be more than that. Much more. This is garbage. Clean it up.” — via Nicholas J. Cotsonika at Yahoo Sports.

“Those who defend fighting in the NHL will tell you this had nothing to do with fighting. And that’s a bunch of unadulterated bunk. It had everything to do with fighting. Why did Thornton attack Orpik in the first place? Because Orpik refused to fight him, that’s why. So Thornton took it upon himself to force Orpik into a fight. And that has nothing to do with fighting? Who are these people trying to kid?”  — via Ken Campbell at Hockey News.

___________

You know that place in The Daily Oklahoman? The one between Big Game & Club Soccer? That’s where you may find some Barons coverage. For the rest of the news, check out BBG&CS every weekend.

Don’t Look Now! (But Linus Omark Is Pretty Good…Again)

Photo by Rob Ferguson

The Oklahoma City Barons aren’t entirely insufferable, but they have the potential to be, and that’s a frightening thought. When it comes to wins and losses, this is a squad that can earn either one of those things nighty regardless of the competition. That’s something this team hasn’t battled for three straight seasons. More often than not, they could win games at will, and probably be the favored opponent in 75% of their games played. What a difference a season, a new NHL GM, and a slew of young prospects can make.

Don’t look now, but Linus Omark is tied for second in league points (26), sixth in goals (12), seventh in game winning goals (3), and currently is riding a seven game point streak while the team has only won twice in that same stretch. That’s not a bad batch of numbers for an under .500 team.

That’s pretty amazing.

1.08 is his point per game pace over the duration of 24 games in 2013-14. He is responsible for 12 of 67 goals scored by the Barons. He continues to be the one player, on paper and with my eyeballs, that can consistently put up numbers. All the point scoring goodness aside, Linus Omark still has some battling to do before becoming an Oiler.

Last weekend, when Craig MacTavish was in OKC to watch the team play, the comment most made on Omark was “we have to figure out what to do with him.” A statement made before.

So why is Omark still battling for a spot with the Oilers? Good question.

In the offseason, with Toni Rajala exiting the team, the re-emergence of Linus Omark seemed to point to his increased value with a MacTavish created team. As we approach Christmas, it appears that that isn’t the case. The reason for this is three fold – make, mold, and motivation.

Omark is a risky player. That’s what makes him so entertaining to watch. He’s a puck dangling, possession trending hockey player. Eakins likes that, but doesn’t feel that he needs it. Fast out of the defensive zone with multiple touches seems to be the Oilers mark this season, and he doesn’t fit that mold. He’s getting better at that, but it’s hard to break a wild stallion. Therefore, the motivation to bring him into the NHL, with his defensive liability issues, is pretty small at this point.

Ask me about his game when we reach 50+ played in the AHL. Barring injury, he will still be the Barons most valuable asset. He’s that good. He’s also making attempts to steer his game in the direction that MacTavish wants him to move it. He might be willing, but is he able? We will see.

Oklahoma City Penalties Abound, Soundly Defeated By Milwaukee

Four straight unanswered goals scored by the Milwaukee Admirals, and some lumpy starting goaltending from Laurent Brossoit led to a sound victory by the Admirals on Friday night. The sloppiness of the youthful Barons squad again got the best of them, and the road trip through the Midwest kicks off with a 5-2 loss.

The most recent start for Brossoit was pretty solid despite giving up five goals in the game. It was labeled as such because his blue line had no protection, and neither did his goal mouth. Thus I defended his high GAA vehemently. Another game, more awkward defense from OKC, and a world of penalty trouble again led Brossoit towards a high number of allowed goals. It also earned him another loss.

In the first period the Admirals owned the offensive zone battle. Colton Sissons and Mark Van Guilder scored a pair of goals in the first eight minutes of play to quickly put the Barons in a hole. The defensive missteps on both goals were just awful, and would form the bedrock of the entire night’s performance. A pointless Travis Ewanyk fight, and two goofy penalties from Steve MacIntyre (a rough and an elbow) kept the Barons on their heels for the first twenty minutes.

The good news for OKC was that they were good on the PK, and seemed to put double digit shot totals on Milwaukee goaltender Justin Darling. However, penalties and two really ugly goals let in by the defense forced a mistake riddled first period on the team from OKC.

Milwaukee would again score a pair of goals including one on the power play in the early minutes of a period to take an overwhelming 4-0 lead. Linus Omark would take two tripping penalties in the same period, but that wasn’t the entire story. Oklahoma City only mustered four shots on net, and with the Ads surging on Brossoit, the Barons would switch tenders following four goals allowed. Ty Rimmer would enter the game, but the damage had been done.

With a four goal lead heading into the final period, it was clear that the Barons would have to take chances to muster some resemblance of life offensively. Linus Omark would score his twelfth goal of the season on a dandy unassisted chance to inch his squad towards redemption. Brad Hunt, quarterbacking the power play, would notch another goal. Time ran out for OKC, and the Admirals would seal the deal on a Kevin Henderson goal.

The 5-2 defeat at the hands of the Milwaukee Admirals was not the best way to start the Midwest road trip. Brossoit seems to be in trouble just a bit, and Ty Rimmer looked solid in a mop up role. Rimmer likely gets the start on Saturday, and cross your fingers that the team shows up.

Barons Lineup:

Omark-Horak-Stretch
R.Hamilton-Martindale-Miller
Nesbitt-Acton-Ford
C.Hamilton-Ewanyk-MacIntyre

Klefbom-Fedun
Grebeshkov-Musil
Davidson-Hunt

Brossoit
Rimmer

The Ice/Snow/Sleet/Freezing Storm Survival Guide: Barons Edition

“Feast your eyes on the bitterness of my breath,” said Old Man Winter to a humble Oklahoman. “I will seize your aching bones, freeze your eyes shut as they cower in fear of opening, and will release the runny faucet of your uncovered nostrils. For I am upon you, banging on your back door, parading my way through your homestead. Be prepared, Winter is here,” as he began to laugh uncontrollably.

Winter has come a bit early to Oklahoma, and I am not ready for it just yet. I get all cute and say things like “wouldn’t a snowy December be great?” and “it doesn’t feel like Christmas time, why can’t we just have normal seasons around here?”. Then I opened my door this morning and the 20’s hit me like a Louisville Slugger to the gut. Pffft, 20’s? That’s a tropical climate compared to the -15 or so that will be screaming through the weekend.

The coldest temperatures Oklahoma has seen since the early 1980’s will arrive this week and into next week. As a native of Ohio, I remember nasty winters, jumps from my rooftop into billowy snow banks, but clearly I’ve been gone from the Northern states for far too long – I’ve become a winter softee.

Huddle together, Oklahoma, and we can make it through this thing (all joking aside, there is a lot of danger to this storm, be safe everyone). How, you ask? I have a solution.

Food Prep

Go hardy is always a good rule of thumb in these situations. Skip the chip aisle, where the Doritos are long gone, and instead go straight to “whole grains”. If porridge isn’t an option, oatmeal and malt-o-meal will do. Wash it down with a bit of maple syrup. Choose a syrup that doesn’t have a see-through bottle, those are the best. If it was tapped from Canada, even better.

Coffee is also a must. Dark roast of the french variety will allow you to withstand some vigorous snow shoveling if need be (probably won’t need to, but be prepared).

If you must go the junk food route, plan on things that stick to your ribs. Bacons, whole hams, and potatoes will cure what winter ails might be hurled your direction. When did potatoes become junk food? LOL

Television Prep

Fight the urge to watch the news channels except for noon and evening updates. Instead settle in for some “warm” tv watching. Suggestions? Friday, Saturday, and Sunday might give you excuses to not leave your house, and if you are up for it, there are some good things coming your way on the tube.

Thursday, “Rudolph’s Shiny New Year” brightens your living room, as does “The Muppet Christmas Carol”, “The Polar Express”, and “The Bishop’s Wife”. That is a pretty good foursome for the holidays. The Carrie Underwood led “Sound of Music” also will air live on NBC. That should make for an interesting program.

Thursday there are a slew of NHL games to take a gander at. Dallas vs. Toronto. San Jose vs. Pitt. Boston vs. Montreal. Chicago vs. Minnesota. Colorado vs. Edmonton. Do yourself a favor, take advantage of the wintry temps, stay inside, and watch a night of incredible sports. Just do it.

Friday the choices continue to be full on holiday. “How The Grinch Stole Christmas”, “Yes, Virginia”, and “Frosty The Snowman” dominate the programming, but new episodes of “The Carrie Diaries” (don’t tell anyone I said that, please), the MAC Championship game, and HGTV’s “Celebrity Holiday Homes” can warm like no other. A Ninja Turtles marathon on Nickelodeon is also compatible for the multi-generation household.

Saturday and Sunday will be dominated by football, and you can’t blame me for recommending full on gluttony of pigskin. Hockey, I see you too. But wait, what about our Barons?

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday you can tune in to the first three games of the Barons road trip all being played in chilly places themselves. Milwaukee and Chicago this time of year are pretty biting temperature wise (although warmer than OKC right now), and so the locals can probably empathize with OKCers (or just laugh at how big wimps we are).

Device Prep

Plug in your devices. Phone, iPad, computer, pebble, battery operated microwave, hot plate, 15 mile range walkie talkies – if they can be charged, charge them. When you get cabin fever, and you will, you will want those things more than any other. I’ve often wondered how I can rig a generator to my house so that I can protect my family from the harsh reality that we might not be safe WITHOUT WI-FI! So, as you read this, plug in your things. You can thank me via a tweet on Saturday afternoon.

Book Prep

If you would rather not eat or play Fruit Ninja or watch “The Carrie Diaries” (again, that stays between you and me) maybe book reading is your forte. It’s mine too, but only when I have long stretches of time. I’ll go ahead and recommend three (with hockey roots because this is a hockey blog).

My Last Fight: The True Story of a Hockey Rock Star by Darren McCarty
Kindle Edition iPad Edition

I hate the Red Wings, but this Darren McCarty/Kevin Allen book on his career in Motown is absolutely fantastic reading. Get it for the fights, enjoy it for the hearts.

A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs & the Rise of Professional Hockey by Stephen Harper
Kindle Edition iPad Edition 

I also don’t like the Toronto Maple Leafs, but there ebs and flows are historically notorious. Their “growing up” of hockey in Canada forced the nation to start to figure out how to legitimize the national sport. Written well at nearly 400 pages, this one reads surprisingly simplistic.

Between the Pipes: A Revealing Look at Hockey’s Legendary Goalies by Randi Druzin
Kindle Edition iPad Edition

Goalies are weird creatures. But often times we love them and hate them in the same breathe. Putting a face, personality, and figure to the mask is the goal here, and the stories are remarkable. Meshing the oddity of goaltenders with the passion for their position is right in Druzin’s wheel house.

Stay warm, Oklahoma, and always remember GO BARONS!

Potter. Marincin. Lander. All Headed To Oilers. And Why?

That’s a great question, and I’m glad that you’ve landed on this site as we make a complete stab in the dark on explaining exactly “why” Corey Potter, Martin Marincin, and Anton Lander are all heading to Oil Country. Well, first and foremost, Will Acton and Denis Grebeshkov are headed to Oklahoma City.

Although Grebs is familiar with OKC, Will Acton hasn’t hit minor league ice since playing for the Toronto Marlies last season. The Oilers have favored him on the fourth line, and it has been dicey to say the least. I’ve long believed (okay, not long, a couple of weeks) that both Anton Lander and Roman Horak are better fourth line centermen. They just are. Capable of fine defense and offense, they have the potential to give you fewer chances against. That is ALWAYS a good thing.

Corey Potter and Denis Grebeshkov seem to be guys most likely to switch places lately, and I think I have always favored Grebs a bit more. And Potter, having just landed in OKC only a few days ago, is going to hit the defensive blender in the wake of a complete spanking put on by the Coyotes. Hooowwwwwwwbadcantheybe?

Marincin is an interesting choice.

Having never played a single minute of NHL hockey, this will be his first call up to the Oilers. That’s huge for the young prospect who is only a year removed from playing alongside Justin Schultz. Might we see those two duo-it-up again? Why not. Maybe there is some magical bean that the two can share, and instantly become bastions of defensive awesomeness. On the other hand…

Marincin continues to be hit or miss. In the defensive blender himself, it isn’t unusual for him to play with Taylor Fedun (solid puck mover) the most, and Brad Hunt and Oscar Klefbom from time to time. However, we are about four days removed from him being a healthy scratch, but that was probably more about prospect space more than anything else.

There are only two current Barons sporting a positive plus/minus. You guessed it, the two defenders whom play offensive styles and high minutes together – Fedun and Marincin. Marincin hasn’t notched as many points as Fedun, but he is also a more cautious yin to the Taylor yang. However, he’s coming off a really good game where he scored the first goal against the stingy Texas Stars.

At this point in the Oilers season it certainly is worth a look at some guys who have cut their teeth on the farm. With Lander, we’ve been there, done that, not necessarily interested in the t-shirt, but he knows that. This might be a good excuse for him to charge forth in a bottom role, if they choose to place him there. PK might be a good spot too.

Marincin is a question mark of sorts, but he is easy to root for. String bean or not, he has some admirable hockeying running through his veins. Let’s see what happens.

And what to do with Will Acton? Well, the loss of Lander instantly upgrades Horak to the first line center with Omark on the wing. Acton might be an underachiever on a second line, so perhaps the third line with C.J. Stretch and Ryan Hamilton on the wings? Possibilities are there, and don’t think for a moment that Horak doesn’t begin to have a bit of a breakthrough on the Barons long road swing. He’s potentially that good.

More to come.

If it’s Tuesday, this must be Oklahoma City! 2013-14 Edition.

(Cross posted and updated from ArtfulPuck)

We are only 23 games into this OKC Barons season but we’ve seen a great deal of transition, evolution and a multitude of transactions. As of Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 4th, the Barons and Oilers have implemented 74 transactions for the Barons roster and we are not even halfway through the season yet. That breaks down to 3.22 transactions per game on average! This has to be a record of some sort, right?

To give you a better understanding of a normal season’s transactions here are the past three season’s alongside this 2013-14 season. As you can see, the first two months of this season’s transactions amount to more than half of the previous three seasons. Keep in mind that 2012-13 was a partial lockout for the NHL, therefore October, November and December transactions were slightly lower than normal.

CHARTS UPDATED: December 4, 2013

 

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

Apr.

10

9

9

Mar.

14

16

27

Feb.

19

15

16

Jan.

28

31

12

Dec.

(9)

9

20

12

Nov.

37

11

18

12

Oct.

28

5

9

6

 

74

96

118

94

_______

And, if you are wondering what positions are being moved around the most? As of Dec. 4th this is the breakdown:

 – Left Wing – 

 – Centers – 

 – Right Wing – 

 – Defensemen – 

 – Goaltenders – 

12

18

2

30

12

_______

Some of the transfers are “paper” only, Arcobello’s mid-November transfer for instance, and some players are merely “passing” through on their way elsewhere, Chet Pickard for instance. This season seems to be one where MacT has a quick “recall” and “send down” trigger finger. So buckle up, OKC fans!

December 2013 = 9 … so far.

12/04/2013 Corey Potter (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
12/04/2013 Martin Marincin (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
12/04/2013 Anton Lander (C) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
12/04/2013 Will Acton (C) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
12/04/2013 Denis Grebeshkov (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
12/02/2013 Corey Potter (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
12/02/2013 Jason LaBarbera (G) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
12/02/2013 Kale Kessy (LW) ADD Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) from Bakersfield (ECHL)
12/02/2013 Ty Rimmer (G) ADD Recalled from loan to Quad City (CHL)

_______

November 2013 = 37

11/27/2013 Denis Grebeshkov (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/26/2013 Austin Fyten (LW) DEL Loaned to Idaho (ECHL)
11/26/2013 Erick Lizon (RW) DEL Loaned to Wichita (CHL)
11/25/2013 Kale Kessy (LW) DEL Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) to Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/25/2013 Tyler Bunz (G) DEL Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) to Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/22/2013 Steve MacIntyre (LW) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/19/2013 Jason LaBarbera (G) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/18/2013 Alex Lavoie (C) DEL Released from PTO
11/18/2013 Curtis Hamilton (LW) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/17/2013 Ilya Bryzgalov (G) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/16/2013 Alex Lavoie (C) ADD Signed to PTO
11/16/2013 Mark Arcobello (C) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/16/2013 Oscar Klefbom (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/15/2013 Mark Arcobello (C) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/15/2013 Oscar Klefbom (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/12/2013 Corey Potter (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/12/2013 Taylor Fedun (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/11/2013 Ilya Bryzgalov (G) ADD Conditioning loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/11/2013 Mario Lamoureux (C) DEL Released from PTO
11/08/2013 Ben Eager (LW) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/08/2013 Chet Pickard (G) DEL Loaned to Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/08/2013 Chet Pickard (G) ADD Signed to SPC
11/08/2013 Joel Broda (C) DEL Released from PTO
11/08/2013 Laurent Brossoit (G) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/08/2013 Linus Omark (LW) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/08/2013 Olivier Roy (G) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/08/2013 Roman Horak (C) ADD Loaned from Edmonton (NHL)
11/07/2013 Justin Maylan (C) DEL Released from PTO
11/05/2013 Linus Omark (LW) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/05/2013 Ryan Hamilton (LW) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/04/2013 Taylor Fedun (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
11/03/2013 David Musil (D) ADD Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) from Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/03/2013 Martin Gernat (D) ADD Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) from Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/02/2013 Anton Lander (C) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
11/01/2013 David Musil (D) DEL Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) to Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/01/2013 Martin Gernat (D) DEL Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) to Bakersfield (ECHL)
11/01/2013 Philip Larsen (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)

_______ 

October 2013 = 28

10/31/2013 Anton Lander (C) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/31/2013 Corey Potter (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/31/2013 Denis Grebeshkov (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/29/2013 Anton Lander (C) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/29/2013 Mario Lamoureux (C) ADD Signed to PTO
10/27/2013 Corey Potter (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/27/2013 Richard Bachman (G) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/27/2013 Tyler Bunz (G) ADD Reassigned by Edmonton (NHL) from Bakersfield (ECHL)
10/26/2013 Anton Lander (C) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/25/2013 Justin Maylan (C) ADD Signed to PTO
10/24/2013 Corey Potter (D) ADD Conditioning loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/22/2013 Ben Eager (LW) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/22/2013 Taylor Fedun (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/21/2013 Taylor Fedun (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/21/2013 Tyler Pitlick (RW) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/18/2013 Denis Grebeshkov (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/18/2013 Erik Burgdoerfer (D) DEL Loaned to Bakersfield (ECHL)
10/18/2013 Erik Burgdoerfer (D) ADD Signed to SPC
10/15/2013 Joel Broda (C) ADD Signed to PTO
10/15/2013 Philip Larsen (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/15/2013 Ryan Jones (LW) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/11/2013 Brandon Davidson (D) ADD Returned on loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/11/2013 Denis Grebeshkov (D) ADD Conditioning loan from Edmonton (NHL)
10/11/2013 Philip Larsen (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/07/2013 Joey Leach (D) DEL Loaned to Bakersfield (ECHL)
10/07/2013 Nicolas Tremblay (C) DEL Loaned to Bakersfield (ECHL)
10/06/2013 Brandon Davidson (D) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)
10/04/2013 Ryan Hamilton (LW) DEL Recalled from loan by Edmonton (NHL)

_______

If It’s Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium (1969). Most of you are far too young to remember this movie, but trust me … it fits in an odd, quirky sort of way.