Anton Belov Demoted

Jonathan Willis
December 05 2013 03:48PM

 

The Oilers have announced the demotion of Anton Belov to the AHL's Oklahoma City Barons.

Key Questions

1. Did the Oilers need the roster space with their recent call-ups?

The Oilers official roster currently shows 14 healthy forwards, seven defencemen and two goaltenders. That's a full NHL roster, but Boyd Gordon could easily be shuffled off to retroactive injured reserve (joining Tyler Pitlick, Ilya Bryzgalov and Richard Bachman on the list). As Bruce McCurdy pointed out on Monday, Gordon could go on injured reserve and be eligible to return for Saturday's game.

So unless Gordon plays tonight, no the Oilers didn't need the roster space. And even if Gordon's ready to go, Edmonton could have avoided this situation by just leaving Martin Marincin in the minors. 

2. This saves Edmonton money, right?

Yes it does. Assuming that neither player hits his performance bonuses, Marincin's roughly $200,000 cheaper. It's difficult to imagine that $200,000 being decisive in this move, though.  

3. Does Belov need to clear waivers?

No. Belov is on his entry-level contract, so there is no risk of losing him on the waiver wire. 

Why It's A Bad Idea

The simple answer is this: there are not seven better defenders on the Oilers roster than Anton Belov. Here's what the depth chart looks like today, based on total minutes handed out by the coaching staff:

  1. Jeff Petry: 640 minutes
  2. Andrew Ference: 595 minutes
  3. Anton Belov: 528 minutes
  4. Justin Schultz: 457 minutes
  5. Nick Schultz: 435 minutes
  6. Philip Larsen: 170 minutes
  7. Denis Grebeshkov: 96 minutes
  8. Corey Potter: 85 minutes
  9. Taylor Fedun: 49 minutes

We could point to Belov's strong underlying statistics, his size and strength and ability to move the puck, or any number of other items, but the biggest point here is that the only left-side defender ahead of Belov in total minutes is Andrew Ference. The coaches have made it clear, by their ice-time decisions, that Belov is seen as a top-four defender on this team.

Now, nothing says the coaches can't scratch a top-four defenceman, to try and get him to improve his game. But one does not simply demote a top-four defenceman for a guy who has never played an NHL game. It's bizarre. 

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
Avatar
#51 Johnny Larue
December 05 2013, 04:02PM
Trash it!
19
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

My guess is he is not going anywhere it is just a paper move to allow Boyd Gordon to play tonight.

Avatar
#52 chmilhouse
December 05 2013, 04:21PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
HugThePost wrote:

where is today's GDB?

Or have we reached the point where it is pointless to even consider the outcomes of the games have any uncertainty to them.

Sigh. Following this team is grimness.

Gregor is on vacay... he's not on the radio all week either.

Avatar
#53 CMG30
December 05 2013, 04:56PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

I have to admit that I'm confused by this move. I also have to admit that I've not been watching the games lately but when I did catch a game, Belov did not seem to be my first candidate for demotion. In fact, going forward I kind of saw him as part of the solution (Not a top 2, but valuable none-the-less) Maybe they saw value in allowing him to play top paring minutes in OKC for a while?

Avatar
#54 John
December 05 2013, 05:32PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

The real head scratcher for me is bringing up both Larsen and Marincin over Fedun. I like both, but right now Fedun is killing it in the AHL, and had a great first 3 games in the NHL. If the idea is to just get Marincin a few games and some $$ i get that, but doesn't seem to be the best player coming in. I actually think Marincin will be better in a few years, but Fedun has clearly earned another call up.

Avatar
#55 Smokey
December 05 2013, 10:09PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

Is this a healthy scratch or he hurt?

If he scratched we just pulled another Hejda. He will look good in Pittsburgh next year. Guess we are not resigning him. Lol. Good Golly management sucks.

Avatar
#56 **
December 05 2013, 11:39PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
mlcselli wrote:

Belov is in the minors, Petry is in the press box and Smid is in Calgary. They're not the best defenders in the league, but they're the best we have or had. Icing an AHL team on an NHL roster is undoubtedly one of the most moronic, nonsensical decisions made by this foolish group of managers to date.

Except for PHillip Larsen (who was caught puck watching a couple of times) the D corps tonight played really well, specially the third pairing of Potter and Marincin. There's a player there with Belov, but he looks overwhelmed. Being in the AHL will be good for him. Petry is not a top 2 dman. Spreading the ice time today between all 6 defenders worked much better for the Oilers than throwing Petry to the wolves. Smid I like, but like Petry he was being used in the wrong situations in Edmonton.

Avatar
#57 John
December 06 2013, 01:31AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

Ha...you Sour Pete's were so wrong. 8-2 booya

Avatar
#58 Harlie
December 05 2013, 04:15PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

Guess what. Cat survive to.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/03/open-can-without-can-opener-video_n_4372906.html?utm_hp_ref=canada&ir=Canada

Avatar
#59 rindog
December 05 2013, 04:30PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers
Puck_In_Throat wrote:

This is clearly being made just to allow the Oilers to play Marincin for tonight. Like when they re-assigned Arcobello earlier. Belov will not get on a plane. But b/c of his contract, he can be sent down w/o having to clear waivers.

Plain and simple, that's the reason. Every other player sitting out would have to clear.

If that is the case (which it probably is), wouldn't it be a good idea for the organization to inform their fan base?

I realize it is their business and it's not necessary to include joe fan in every transaction, but it just seems like a good PR move to be open and communicate with the loyal fans that have stuck by this team through some pretty sh!!ty times...

Avatar
#60 Rod from Viking
December 05 2013, 05:00PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

YFC Prez Did you pick up a couple Rexall bags to put on, I am going to be wearing them in section 112 on Saturday.

Avatar
#61 **
December 05 2013, 11:44PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

Now that Belov has been demoted, maybe Marincin was brought up instead of Klefbom, Fedun, or Davidson to shoecase him because there's about to be a trade involving him.

Avatar
#62 Dan 1919
December 06 2013, 08:01AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers
D-Unit wrote:

Don't quite understand why people are upset about this. No matter what the Oil do on defence they have 4 AHL D on the roster. Might as well rotate them all through the AHL. They are also no better or worse with Belov on the team. He isn't a win or lose difference maker. None of the D are n

WOW, I was going through these comments wondering if ANYBODY in Edmonton actually realizes that this team has been a bottom dweller for a reason, or they think it’s just hockey magic.

You are 100% correct, all they Oiler’s defencemen are AHL caliber, and rotating through them means nothing. Petry is probably one of the most overrated things this town has seen since those silver balls on Whitemud. He would have trouble, or probably just not be able to crack a good team’s line-up, yeah he can move alright and has flashes where everyone sees him, but at the end of the day he is terrible in his own zone and a liability.

Smid and Belov, seriously? 5-6 or more like 6-7 dmen on a good team.

Don’t get me wrong, it is still a bad thing that we can swap out our apparent top 3 dmen with no ill affects, but at this point we can do it.

Avatar
#63 A-Mc
December 05 2013, 04:34PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

Gregor tweeted something about the hospital taking care of his wife. GDP is probably not up because he was at the hospital or some such scenario - which is excusable!

Avatar
#64 A-Mc
December 05 2013, 04:40PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

@Andrew

...tell me I'm wrong.

You're wrong

ps: how do i force the quote bounding box? i want to quote only part of a post

Avatar
#65 DieHard
December 05 2013, 04:52PM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

There must be a trade in the works. Could be a block buster. Someone needs to see somebody play.

Avatar
#66 Naky
December 05 2013, 05:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

Nothing about this makes sense. You might have beef with Belov's play at times this year, but he's still a better (by far) defenceman than Potter and Marincin at this point in his career. This literally boggles the mind. Either this is completely inept roster management with no foresight or it's a serious punishment for something behind the scenes we don't know about.

Avatar
#67 Alsker
December 05 2013, 05:31PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

After Tuesday night this one could end up being a couple feet under the rock bottom...as for Belov maybe OKC has a coach that can actually explain and teach this system??

Avatar
#68 Joy S. Lee
December 05 2013, 08:35PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
oilerjed wrote:

A couple of hours ago it was VERY important to the coach that he see the game from upstairs. Looks like they feel he can get the same instruction as the rest of us.

Yeah, you're absolutely right about his earlier statement, and the real unfortunate part is that it's so.....Oilers'ish. Don't worry, the secret is safe...the Oilers suck. Don't worry, no one realizes what you're up to, Dallas....

Avatar
#69 **
December 05 2013, 11:42PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

It seems that management is finally listening to the statistics and probability and have officially declared the season lost. Time to see what they got on the prospects. Expect to see Klefbom and Davison up at some point before the Olympics break.

Avatar
#70 Andy P
December 06 2013, 12:34PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
oilerjed wrote:

WTF did he say to Eakins?

Something like this: Вы канадцы играть, как девчушки мальчиков. Позвольте мне удар плохого человека с конька, он не даритель нам неприятности снова

Avatar
#71 He Who Knows
December 06 2013, 05:10PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

Mac T is an effin clown as well. These guys have no plan. They never had a plan. They do not know what a plan means.

Avatar
#72 pkam
December 05 2013, 05:12PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Jonathan Willis

I don't think the Oilers really send him down to OKC. Probably another way to buy a roster spot for a few days instead of putting a player on IR, like what they did before with Acrobello. Perhaps it is easier to demote a player than to put a player on IR?

If it is bizarre to scratch Belov base on TOI, then is it even more bizarre to scratch Petry? If you don't think it is bizarre to scratch Petry, then why is it bizarre to scratch Belov?

Avatar
#73 jeremywilhelm
December 06 2013, 07:17AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Trade him to the Flames!

Avatar
#74 T&A4Flames
December 06 2013, 07:56AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@jeremywilhelm

May as well send us Yakaflop as well. Seriously, -1, 0 pnts in an 8-2 win??! We can send you 2 C+ prospects again for Yaks and Belov. Deal?

Comments are closed for this article.