The Edmonton Oilers have announced via Twitter a number of roster moves. Recalled are defencemen Corey Potter and Martin Marincin, along with centre Anton Lander. Going to Oklahoma are Denis Grebeshkov and Will Acton.
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) December 4, 2013
The General Manager
Craig MacTavish took advantage of the Oilers’ trip to Dallas this past weekend to take in some games in Oklahoma City, watching the Barons win on Saturday and then lose on Tuesday night. Corey Potter didn’t play in those games, but Martin Marincin and Anton Lander both did and were given the opportunity to impress the G.M. in person.
Based on today’s moves, it’s fair to say they did.
Up front, the swap of Lander for Acton is fully deserved and has been al ong time coming. Lander perhaps isn’t as physical as Acton, but he’s a more rounded player at this point – both players offer the Oilers a fourth-line defensive specialist, but Lander’s offensive game has come along nicely in the AHL this year and he’s at the point where he’s a true 200-foot player – in other words, a guy who can legitimately help the team at both ends of the ice as opposed to just in the defensive zone.
Or, to put it another way: Will Acton’s best AHL season saw him put up 19 points. Lander has 15 through 18 games this year. They aren’t in the same ballpark offensively, and Lander’s posted numbers while being dominant as a defensive forward.
On defence, the swap of Potter for Grebeshkov isn’t a big shock either. Potter’s been the better player when the two have played together in Oklahoma City; he plays a steadier defensive game than Grebeshkov and moves the puck almost as well.
The addition of Marincin is the only move I wonder about, but if the Oilers want another option on the left side he’s more ready for NHL work than Oscar Klefbom or Brad Hunt. Marincin has played better of late, though, and particularly on offence. In October he played eight games, with eight shots, one assist and a minus-two rating; since then he’s put up five points, 26 shots and a plus-six rating in 12 contests.
These are reasonable moves. Two of the trades make the Oilers better right now, and the recall of Marincin rewards a guy on the NHL bubble who has made strides in his game of late.