Mark Arcobello assigned to the Barons, but for how long?

News rolled down today that the Edmonton Oilers have assigned forward Mark Arcobello to the Oklahoma City Barons. Arcobello hasn’t gotten much playing time in Edmonton lately, which would lend credence to this assignment being an actual thing unlike the last time he was assigned to OKC. His last assignment ended up only lasting about 24 hours as players were shuffled around the Oilers roster in order to make room for Arcobello to stay with the big club.

The reason I wonder how long he’ll really be with the Barons this time is that the Olympic Break is coming up in nine days. The NHLPA set forth some rules that govern how NHL players are to be handled during the break, should they be assigned to an AHL club beforehand. There are two groups that players can fall into.

The first is the 87-day group. Any players that spent more than 87 days on an NHL roster between October 1st and January 24th (here’s where the big thing is) AND remained on the roster past January 24th earned Olympic time-off. Arcobello would fall into this group.

The other group, and one that won’t see any play as it regards the Barons and Oilers as far as I can tell, is the 16-game group. Players who play in 16 of the last 20 games on an NHL team’s schedule leading up to the break would fall into this group.

Waivers of course, are still in effect for both groups.

If this is an actual assignment, Arcobello would only be able to play in the next three games for the Barons. A two-game set against the Texas Stars and another against the Charlotte Checkers, before being effectively shut-out on February 9th when the Olympic break begins. Players that have earned the Olympic time-off are not allowed to play, practice, or participate with the AHL team regardless of assignment.

Many thanks to Crunch writer Lindsay Kramer for the info: http://www.syracuse.com/crunch/index.ssf/2014/01/syracuse_crunch_and_other_ahl_teams_governed_by_specific_nhl_transaction_rules_d.html