Oilers Trade Ryan O’Marra To Anaheim For Bryan Rodney

The Oilers pulled the trigger on a minor trade today, sending minor-league forward Ryan O’Marra to Anaheim in exchange for minor-league defenseman Bryan Rodney.

Bryan Rodney

Season League GP G A PTS +/-
2005-06 ECHL 59 4 21 25 -9
2005-06 AHL 8 1 2 3 3
2006-07 ECHL 45 4 28 32 -5
2007-08 ECHL 23 7 14 21 -7
2007-08 AHL 42 4 11 15 -2
2008-09 AHL 58 3 33 36 -12
2008-09 NHL 8 0 2 2 -3
2009-10 AHL 54 7 28 35 1
2009-10 NHL 22 1 10 11 -4
2010-11 AHL 77 9 38 47 -15
2010-11 NHL 3 0 0 0 0
2011-12 AHL 41 5 15 20 -11
Total ECHL 127 15 63 78 -21
Total AHL 280 29 127 156 -36
Total NHL 33 1 12 13 -7

Minor-league statistics don’t exactly give a full-picture view of a player, but in this case Rodney’s offensive ability is obvious. He was basically a point-per-game player by the time he left the ECHL, and he’s scored everywhere he’s gone. Of course, he’s also been a minus player virtually everywhere he’s gone.

From the summer of 2010, here’s what McKeen’s Hockey had to say about Rodney:

Undrafted London, Ontario native earned his first trip to the AHL All-Star Game plus five recalls to Carolina where he gave a solid account of himself .. a poised, skilled blueliner who has gradually added defensive structure during his five pro seasons .. stride is long and wide-track yet lacking elite speed .. crossovers are partially stunted but still gets around fairly well laterally .. moves the puck smoothly and intelligently out of his own zone – stays composed in possession and is aided by fine in-close control .. joins the rush well and usually makes smart reads in the attacking zone, though can pinch in too deep at times .. excels distributing the puck on the power play .. partnered with Jamie McBain during the AHL playoffs (8-0-4-4, plus-7).

Reading that quote, Rodney comes across as a good offensive blueliner with mediocre skating and some defensive questions, which fits with what I’ve read elsewhere.

Rodney hasn’t been a perfect fit with the Ducks’ farm team in Syracuse – he was a healthy scratch twice in the last week, though it’s worth noting he did respond with a goal and plus-2 rating in a 7-1 Syracuse win upon his return. Even so, his plus/minus is the worst of any defenseman on the team for the second consecutive year.

On a more positive note, Rodney’s numbers from his longest NHL stint to date show that he can do nice things on the power play, even at the NHL level.

Barring a sudden flourish of trades from Steve Tambellini, it seems fair to assume that Rodney will spend most if not all of the rest of this season in Oklahoma City, and they can probably use the help. The Barons have used 14 different defensemen this season, and Kirill Tulupov, Dan Ringwald and Dylan Yeo all dressed last game. It’s an expensive pickup for them; Rodney’s full-season AHL salary is $250,000, as opposed to $70,000 for O’Marra.

As for O’Marra, this represents an opportunity for him. The Oilers have a lot of players at center, and the decision to go with Anton Lander in a fourth-line role robbed O’Marra of his chance to make the NHL team. In brief stints, he was fairly effective, and he should have a better chance at NHL ice-time with the Ducks.

O’Marra will be a restricted free agent this summer, while Rodney will be bound for unrestricted free agency.

In the end, the Ducks deserve credit for picking up a useful reserve player who might play NHL minutes for them in exchange for a disappointing AHL defenseman, while the Oilers are making it clear they want to give Oklahoma the best shot at a post-season run that they can.

For another take on this trade, see Bruce McCurdy’s write-up at Cult of Hockey.

  • Spydyr

    And speaking of from Ontario RIP Wheels! I loved The Kids of Degrassi Street when I was a kid and back then he was known as Derek. Haha classic Canadiana TV memories.

    And kinda sad to see O’Marra go, I liked his size and his desire but he also lacked footspeed and hockey sense. Not a big loss.

  • He sure sounds like a keeper:

    “A few games ago, the Crunch lost in OT after Bryan Rodney stepped aside and allowed free reign at a rather rusty Jeff Deslauriers. Everyone in the building knew the game was over as soon as they saw that Rodney was our last line of defense, and sure enough the Crunch went home crying. Palmieri and Holland sat on the bench for close to a minute after that, just hanging their shaking heads, wondering how the Crunch had managed to blow a two-goal lead and then lose.

    It’s sad that the main people crap like this hurts are the players who are actually trying. To be fair to the coaching staff, I really believe they’re doing everything they can. Judging from players’ comments on Twitter, the practices these past two weeks have been hell. They’re working these guys, trying to make them see that they can’t play like they are and expect to get rewarded by easy practices. Rodney was a healthy scratch Saturday and Sunday for the first time all season, something I believe was done to send a message. Yes, we have a bit of full bench on D right now, but to scratch our only offensive defenseman is a clear message to him. He’s hurting his team.

    Unfortunately, Rodney isn’t the only one. The vets on this team are invisible. After having a few games where two goal leads were blown, the Crunch’s offense has withered again. The team has had four games in a row where only one goal has been scored–one by J. F. Jacques, one by Rick Schofield, one by Kyle Palmieri, and one by Peter Holland. What’s wrong with this picture? Even Devante Smith-Pelly, down on a conditioning assignment, has been limited to one assist in four games despite his obvious speed and conditioning. The team’s low mood is completely dragging down everyone. We are below .500 for what I believe is the first time this year. It’s at least the first time in recent memory.

    Someone needs to step forward and say that enough is enough, before it’s too late.”

  • Spydyr

    The Oilers have Green, Arcobello, House, Vande Velde, and PItlick in OKC…all of whom can play centre.

    The Oilers could probably even put Petrell and/or Lander on the clear day roster.

    Potter, Peckham, and Plante are all hurt right now, right? One more injury makes it really tough on OKC on the blue line again.

    Defensive depth for OKC for the playoffs.

  • Seriously....Gord?

    Not a big deal. He’s a depth move for OKC and he clears out space in OKC for the prospects to play. The NHL centers are fixed, so Omarra really never had a chance with Belanger, Lander, Horcoff, Hopkins, Ganger. He’s got a shot to play in Anaheim now. Good luck Ryan.

  • DSF

    If either Tamby or Lowe were NOT involved in assessing this player……..he may be the next Potter a good solid 7th defenseman who can play up the line a little.

  • Mike Modano's Dog

    From the outside looking in it really seems that they should have given Ryan O’Marra his shot this year. I am a big booster of Lander but even I would rather have seen him play all kinds of minutes down on the farm this year. I don’t see what the upside was to playing Lander 4th line minutes in the NHL to learn. A physically more mature center with seasoning, who seemed perfect to play that 4th line role was left on the farm – again.

    Now O’Mara is gone without getting to see what he could do at the NHL level at this stage of his development. This is bad for the development of both players, if you ask me. Again I am on the outside looking in and there could be any number of things that influenced this decision. But from the outside – it just doesn’t make sense to me.

    Just my two cents.

  • OilLeak

    Bryan Rodney!!!! Not thee Bryan F**king Rodney!!!! WOW! He solves all our defensive Problems!!!

    In other news, Niklas Grossman who is a legit top 4 defenseman was traded for a 2nd and 3rd round draft pick.

    *Cries* This team is doomed to be a lottery team forever.