Linus Omark signs

Jonathan Willis
August 27 2013 10:00AM

 

The Edmonton Oilers announced this morning that they had signed Linus Omark to a one-year contract.

Two-Way Contract

Bob Stauffer offers the explanation for what changed:

The Oilers likely would always have taken Omark back on a two-way deal, but the player clearly felt he'd proven he was better than the AHL. My guess is that after looking around for a new home this summer, Omark got a better idea of what his NHL stock was, and decided that a two-way contract made sense.

As for Edmonton, with the departure of Toni Rajala the Oklahoma City Barons were looking awfully light on firepower; Omark is an exceptional scorer at that level and offers the Oilers another recall option.

What I Expect

It would be something of a surprise if Omark cracked the Oilers' roster out of training camp. While he is a good player there simply isn't room in the top-six and he's a bad fit for a Boyd Gordon line oriented toward defence. With the number of one-way conmtracts the Oilers are carrying, it would take something exceptional for Omark to force his way on to the roster.

But that isn't what this is about for Omark; this is a move designed to get him into the NHL. He already saw that a fantastic year in Switzerland wasn't enough to get the interest of NHL teams - the question isn't his scoring ability, it's the rest of his game. If he shows well in training camp, he might get a team interested when he's sent down to the minors (as he needs to clear waivers). If he clears waivers but shows well in the AHL, he's more likely to land an NHL contract next season.

The Oilers are bringing in a guy who has decided that he wants to play in the NHL more than he wants to make the easy money in Europe. This season is about Omark proving what he can bring; he's going to be highly motivated and it's never a bad thing to have a driven guy with real ability in the system, even if he has rubbed some people the wrong way in the past.

Recently around the Nation Network

At NHL Numbers, Justin Azevedo digs a little deeper into Matt Stajan - who breathed some life into his career with a strong performance last season - and aks if we've been underrating him all along:

Stajan has had three seasons where he's been a top-6 forward by any measure and another outlying season where he was unfairly lambasted by both fans and coach alike - which is odd considering the coach is the one that positioned Stajan to fail. He might not be able to make his teammates in the top-6 better, but he can play with them to the degree necessary. He pushes play forward and scores at a good rate while costing about the average amount for his position.

Click the link above to read more, or check out some of my recent stuff:

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.
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#1 Stew
August 27 2013, 10:02AM
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FIST!

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#2 wiseguy
August 27 2013, 10:03AM
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Facepalm!

The more things change...

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#3 Darrell
August 27 2013, 10:03AM
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This should stick a fist up DSFs a$$ ....

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#4 ScottieA
August 27 2013, 10:06AM
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Oh wait, what was that Stauffer said about Omark back in June?..

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#5 Craig1981
August 27 2013, 10:10AM
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You would think is any of the top 6 get injured there will be a chance for him. Then I would think Dallas might be the perfect type of coach for him.

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#6 Manfly
August 27 2013, 10:14AM
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he won't last long here, and if he scores, he'll make attractive trade bait. kudos to the Oilers for not just releasing this guy and actually trying to get something for him down the road.

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#7 ubermiguel
August 27 2013, 10:16AM
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Sounds like someone picked up a little humility in Zug. Wonder if this deal was in the works before dumping Rajala.

What's his waiver status if it's a 2 way deal?

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#8 Archaeologuy
August 27 2013, 10:18AM
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*Shakes head disapprovingly*

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#9 heresdylan
August 27 2013, 10:18AM
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I don't think Omark will play much if any in the AHL. Mac-T most likely promised lots of NHL minutes. 3rd line with Gordon and Hemsky.

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#10 Mojo
August 27 2013, 10:20AM
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I still think this guy is an NHLer, but he does play very well on the big ice.

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#11 ubermiguel
August 27 2013, 10:20AM
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Spector's reporting $600k NHL price tag!!! MacT win.

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#12 wheeler
August 27 2013, 10:23AM
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Well JW, it appears you and Staples disagree on something, as he likes the Omark-Gordon-Hemsky idea.

"It’s no secret that Ales Hemsky is a soloist who does his best work when surrounded by support players. Newly acquired centre Boyd Gordon and Omark can be those support players, with Gordon doing the heavy lifting down low in the Oilers zone, like Shawn Horcoff used to do with and for Hemsky. Gordon will also be the guy coming back hard on the backcheck. Omark can win pucks on the boards all over the ice, while Hemsky is on the puck, advancing it up the ice, his great strength as a player." "this line would have a chance to get the job done by cycling the puck in the offensive end, and surviving in the Oilers end due to the efforts of Gordon."

I think you're wrong on this one.

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#13 Obiwan Eberle - Team Silver Fox
August 27 2013, 10:27AM
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If there is a no desire to rush RNH back then a shift of Hall to center, for a time, is much easier with Omark as a 2nd line LW option...

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#14 shanetrain
August 27 2013, 10:32AM
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Omark and Hemsky with Gordon is a disaster if it happens.

Gordon will need an oxygen tank everytime he comes back to the bench.

I really hope this isn't it for MacT.

Danny Cleary and maybe Brunner at the right # would really solidify the bottom 6.

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#15 Supernova
August 27 2013, 10:34AM
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Omark > Smyth

good move.

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#16 Supernova
August 27 2013, 10:36AM
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I have to give credit where credit is due

DSF

"Vancouver Sun reports the Sedin twins are hoping to re-sign contract extensions with the #Canucks before training camp opens in two weeks"

DSF has stated this repeatedly, but also states for a lower cap hit, which is where we disagree.

DSF says lower cap number and short term

I say higher cap number and at least 4 years.

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#17 Chris
August 27 2013, 10:37AM
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How anyone can be opposed to adding a player who won a scoring title in an NHL lockout year, with NHLers in the swiss league is beyond me. Hes better than 4/6 of our bottom six. 0.46 ppg in the NHL playing with bottom tier linemates. Oiler fans must not like having depth. Omark has a ton of talent and if he plays hard, like say for a contract, its a win win. 600k!

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#19 DSF
August 27 2013, 10:38AM
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Supernova wrote:

I have to give credit where credit is due

DSF

"Vancouver Sun reports the Sedin twins are hoping to re-sign contract extensions with the #Canucks before training camp opens in two weeks"

DSF has stated this repeatedly, but also states for a lower cap hit, which is where we disagree.

DSF says lower cap number and short term

I say higher cap number and at least 4 years.

How Gillis handles this will be a defining moment of his career.

In other news, CSN Philly ranks the GM/Coach combinations in the NHL.

http://www.csnphilly.com/hockey-philadelphia-flyers/ranking-all-30-gmcoach-combos-nhl?

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#20 truthseeker
August 27 2013, 10:39AM
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Huge move, under-appreciated by most. Opens up the chance to move Gagner to effect fundamental change in the roster.

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#21 Tyler
August 27 2013, 10:41AM
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I'm with ya. MacT stressed that you have to at least be a threat to score when any line is out there. Why have a pure defence line? Put out Hemmer Omark and Gordon (to make sure they're not giving up more than they create - another MacT mantra) and you may have something. A creative and offensively gifted duo against other 3rd lines with less skill could be dynamite. Two potential 30-55pt (Hemmer obviously represent the 40-50 range with Linus in the 30-40 with little PP time) but those guys that deep in the roster doesn't happen often. If the experiment fails in preseason or even a few games in to the season, flush it. Risk reward ratios have to say giddy up. Calgary, Vancouver, the Ducks, PHX and even LA, or the Sharks don't have that kind of offence on the 3rd.

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#22 shanetrain
August 27 2013, 10:48AM
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@DSF

I will save everyone the trouble and report this article has Edmonton dead last. Shocker.

Hard to argue the organizations futility for the last 7 years but to be ranked worse than the fLAMES? Ouch.

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#23 madjam
August 27 2013, 10:58AM
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Other than as a fillin on top two lines , I doubt Omark will see much NHL time . He did not make roster before and we are more skilled now . I liked him first time round but don't forsee him cracking lineup now . Feisty corner person whom might feed the likes of a Smyth . Sorry , just don't see an incumbent he can beat out . Reasonably good on shootouts at least . The extra forward perhaps ? Feel he is slotted for AHL team , as it is deleted of some of their scoring prowess .

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#24 Manfly
August 27 2013, 10:59AM
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wheeler wrote:

Well JW, it appears you and Staples disagree on something, as he likes the Omark-Gordon-Hemsky idea.

"It’s no secret that Ales Hemsky is a soloist who does his best work when surrounded by support players. Newly acquired centre Boyd Gordon and Omark can be those support players, with Gordon doing the heavy lifting down low in the Oilers zone, like Shawn Horcoff used to do with and for Hemsky. Gordon will also be the guy coming back hard on the backcheck. Omark can win pucks on the boards all over the ice, while Hemsky is on the puck, advancing it up the ice, his great strength as a player." "this line would have a chance to get the job done by cycling the puck in the offensive end, and surviving in the Oilers end due to the efforts of Gordon."

I think you're wrong on this one.

i like the idea of an Omark/Gordon/Hemsky 3rd line. it might be the best we can do at the moment, especially if MacT can't dump Hemsky this year.

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#25 Oil Fan in Ottawa
August 27 2013, 11:00AM
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Why not have the bottom two lines be:

Omark-Arcobello-Hemsky (play soft competition)

Smyth/Joensuu-Gordon-Jones (take the d-zone starts)

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#26 DSF
August 27 2013, 11:01AM
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shanetrain wrote:

I will save everyone the trouble and report this article has Edmonton dead last. Shocker.

Hard to argue the organizations futility for the last 7 years but to be ranked worse than the fLAMES? Ouch.

I posted it because Gillis has dropped from near the top to 15th based on how he handled Luongo.

If he commits to too long on the Sedin contract extensions, he may soon find himself near the bottom.

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#27 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
August 27 2013, 11:01AM
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600k is reasonable. I love an underdog story, I hope he makes the team and tears it up this year. Call it youtube fodder, but that 360 shootout winner was awesome to see.

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#28 Rob...
August 27 2013, 11:03AM
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@shanetrain

I'm waiting to read where the National Enquirer has the Oilers GM/Coach duo ranked before giving up all hope... they're a more credible source for hockey news than a site where a 'top story' is "Christie Brinkley made baseball cards of the 1995 World Series teams?".

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#29 yawto
August 27 2013, 11:05AM
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@shanetrain

Steve Tambellini got more for Dustin Penner a couple years back than feaster got for Iginla last year and feaster isn't listed as the worst. ( and who is the high school kid they took saying they felt they got the best player I the draft a year ago ). #zerocredibility

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#30 yawto
August 27 2013, 11:05AM
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@shanetrain

Steve Tambellini got more for Dustin Penner a couple years back than feaster got for Iginla last year and feaster isn't listed as the worst. ( and who is the high school kid they took saying they felt they got the best player I the draft a year ago ). #zerocredibility

. Edit. Why is my phone double posting?

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#31 Peachy
August 27 2013, 11:09AM
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@shanetrain

Given that Toronto is ranked #12, the article has zero credibility.

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#32 justDOit
August 27 2013, 11:10AM
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Anyone know what his AHL salary is on this deal? I'm betting it's a higher number, to dissuade waiver attempts if O! gets sent down.

Edit: CoH says $100k AHL salary.

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#33 Tikkanese
August 27 2013, 11:12AM
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Nothing wrong with this move at all. 30P in 65GP, while getting mostly 3rd-4th line minutes and 15-20(?) of those GP with Belanger is not bad numbers at all.

At best he helps the PP/shootout & depth or gets us something in return in a trade. At worst he gets claimed on waivers, or if he clears waivers, he "replaces" Rajala and OKC is much stronger. I fail to see any negatives. It's simply more depth and with the Oilers injury problems the last few years, that is a good thing to have.

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#34 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
August 27 2013, 11:15AM
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Didn't Omark have a 5 goal game in the AHL a couple years ago?

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#35 The_CWD_GarbageMan
August 27 2013, 11:17AM
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Omark has always had the skill set but never the opportunity to showcase it with the oil. Would have loved to see him get the opportunity with us but how can he when there are younger, more complete players already in the role he is best suited to?

He weighed out the options and this is his best way to showcase his talents be it helping out OKC or filling in for an injured oiler. He'll eventually be dealt this year and I believe he will get his opportunity with someone else in the right environment (i.e. Brunner).

Really hope the guy gets a fair shot in the show. The guy dangles like Miley can TWEERK.

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#36 justDOit
August 27 2013, 11:17AM
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@Jordan Nugent-Hallkins

Yes, but I think one of them was in the shootout. ?

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#37 Fresh Mess
August 27 2013, 11:19AM
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justDOit wrote:

Anyone know what his AHL salary is on this deal? I'm betting it's a higher number, to dissuade waiver attempts if O! gets sent down.

Edit: CoH says $100k AHL salary.

100 grand

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#38 Hayek
August 27 2013, 11:23AM
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Great signing, point a game player in AHL, lead Swiss League in scoring last year. Welcome back Omark, hopefully you make this roster and give us a 3rd line with scoring threat.

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#39 shanetrain
August 27 2013, 11:26AM
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@DSF

Gillis could find himself all alone in first place if he found another home for those two regular season wonders.

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#40 They're $hittie
August 27 2013, 11:27AM
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truthseeker wrote:

Huge move, under-appreciated by most. Opens up the chance to move Gagner to effect fundamental change in the roster.

omark has nothing to do with Gagner. Stupid comment.

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#41 Craig1981
August 27 2013, 11:29AM
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DSF wrote:

How Gillis handles this will be a defining moment of his career.

In other news, CSN Philly ranks the GM/Coach combinations in the NHL.

http://www.csnphilly.com/hockey-philadelphia-flyers/ranking-all-30-gmcoach-combos-nhl?

Some local sports writer rated the Oilers last...OMG. If you read, he based it on their poor performance in the last 7 years. MacT was put in place at the end of the season and Eakins hasn't coached a game yet....... His argument for having them as the worst duo makes as much sense as when you told me the Bruins would resign everyone from last year.

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#42 Jdrevenge
August 27 2013, 11:30AM
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Nuge is out for the first little while leaving a spot open. Omark fills that spot. If he sticks post return - great.

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#43 Mojo
August 27 2013, 11:31AM
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@justDOit

5 goals + shootout winner. All against some goalie named James Reimer.

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#44 GrillBoss
August 27 2013, 11:32AM
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@Jordan Nugent-Hallkins

Yes he did. His post-game interview was a classic. He said he was disappointed because he should have had 7 or 8 that night.

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#45 rubbertrout
August 27 2013, 11:33AM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

*Shakes head disapprovingly*

Looks like someone is going to have a repeat goat this year.

Robbie Schremp never got another look Arch.

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#46 Cody anderson
August 27 2013, 11:36AM
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I don't see him making the team. I think it will be an AHL call-up that would work out very nicely should Hall be forced to Centre for any length of time. Linus would fit into the top 6 on LW and it would increase his trade value.

If he plays lights out and forces his way onto the team I actually see them having to change the lines that everyone imagines so that the 3rd line can still take on the toughs.

Something like:

Hall - Gagner - Eberle

Omark - Nuge - Yakupov

Perron - Gordon - Hemsky

Smyth/Joensuu - Lander - Jones

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#47 LinkfromHyrule
August 27 2013, 11:37AM
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lol that article about Gm coach combinations didn't make much sense. Feaster, Nonis and Holmgren were all wayyy too high. It still amazes me that those guys have their job

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#48 Archaeologuy
August 27 2013, 11:38AM
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rubbertrout wrote:

Looks like someone is going to have a repeat goat this year.

Robbie Schremp never got another look Arch.

A travesty, in my mind. But yes, I know who my Goat is.

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#49 LinkfromHyrule
August 27 2013, 11:39AM
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Mojo wrote:

5 goals + shootout winner. All against some goalie named James Reimer.

Sounds like Omark is a definite call-up vs Toronto!

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#50 NJ
August 27 2013, 11:41AM
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BOLD. /thread

On a non-GM-insulting note, I've always liked Omark. Don't get me wrong, he's not really an Oilers fit, he doesn't "really" fit on the 3rd line, he's not defensively sound and he's not a big centre (because those are everywhere amirite?). But, IMO, he plays hard, he can make a pass and he has a scoring touch. Maybe he does find renewed zeal, energy and motivation here this season, OKC or Edmonton. If he does, he gets moved, maybe at the deadline, maybe with Hemsky. I'm just speculating but if we get a pick for Omark that makes this a good signing. Not bold, but good.

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