Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Fly Back North (Condors training camp roster)

On the day Nick Ellis was recalled to the NHL this first time (April 19, 2017) he ranked No. 4 among AHL rookie goalies in save percentage. Ellis was sent back to Bakersfield today, but he is one of many Condors who may fly back north during the 2017-18 campaign. Here is the training camp roster for Bakersfield as it stands now.


  1. Nick Ellis 2gp, 3.10 .925 in NHL preseason. Ellis showed very well in training camp and his resume looks strong. An NHL look later in the year is possible, maybe even probable.
  2. Edward Pasquale 1gp, 4.14 .857 in NHL preseason. He is something of an unknown to Oilers fans but has a lot of AHL experience. I’m guessing he’ll be Condors’ backup but he could certainly be No. 1 in Bakersfield if required.
  3. Shane Starrett DNP in NHL preseason. His college career is impressive, he could be another Ellis based on his own past.


  1. LD Dillon Simpson 3gp, 0-1-1 in NHL preseason. He played well in NHL training camp and based on the timing of his being sent out would be the No. 10D on the Oilers’ depth chart. That probably means NHL time.
  2. LD Keegan Lowe 2gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. He plays a rugged style and showed well in training camp, Oilers will want to see him in Bakersfield and a recall is possible.
  3. LD Caleb Jones 2gp, 0-2-2 in NHL preseason. He made a very strong impression with the Oilers this fall before being sent down. The smart play on defensemen is to bet against extended NHL time in the first year of an entry-level deal, but Jones sure looked close to ready in camp.
  4. LD Ziyat Paigin 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. The big man looked slow and had trouble with angles during training camp, we should expect some adjustment to North American ice and playing style. A full season in California seems likely.
  5. RD Ryan Mantha 2gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. Another defender who showed very well in training camp, Mantha’s shot and recovery speed impressed. A strong season in the minors is likely, suspect Bakersfield over Wichita based on what we saw in preseason.
  6. RD Ethan Bear 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. He looked good but got into only one game before getting sent down. No worries, Bakersfield and playing every night is where he should be this year.
  7. LD Ben Betker DNP in NHL preseason. Big man is well known to the organization, should be a solid veteran on the third pairing in Bakersfield.
  8. LD Jamie Doornbosch 2016-17 Wichita ECHL. He scored 44gp, 10-20-30 in Wichita last season, he is on a tryout with Bakersfield and elite prospects has him playing in the system this year.
  9. LD Etienne Boutet 2016-17 McGill University. He was 7gp, 2-2-4 last year at McGill.


  1. R Ty Rattie 3gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. He got a long look in training camp and should be a quality scorer in Bakersfield. A recall is possible.
  2. L Mitch Callahan 3gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. Didn’t impress as much as Rattie during training camp but he has great utility and should be a favorite in Bakersfield.
  3. R Patrick Russell 4gp, 0-1-1 in NHL preseason. One of the biggest stories in training camp, Russell got more opportunity than any other Condor in Edmonton this fall. Showed a great deal of rugged play and may play a bigger role in Bakersfield this year.
  4. L Joey Laleggia 3gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. He can skate like the wind and scored in bunches after moving to LW in January 2017. A player to watch this winter.
  5. LC Grayson Downing 2gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. First look at him during training camp and he played well. He should get a feature role as 1C or 2C in the AHL.
  6. L Ryan Hamilton 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. Veteran leader in Bakersfield, he’ll score well when healthy.
  7. F Dana Tyrell 2016-17 2014-15 Springfield Falcons and Columbus Blue Jackets. Here on a tryout.
  8. LC Joe Gambardella 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. He didn’t show well enough to go deep into training camp, but played well in Bakersfield in the spring. Could play a big role with the Condors.
  9. R Greg Chase 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason. Final year of entry-level deal straight ahead, will have to fight for playing time.
  10. C Josh Currie 2016-17 Bakersfield Condors (AHL). He is a quality AHL player and was a big part of last year’s team. Same should be expected for this coming year.
  11. RC Kyle Platzer DNP in NHL preseason. Like Chase, final year of entry deal and badly needs to move the needle.
  12. L Braden Christoffer DNP in NHL preseason. As is the case with Chase and Platzer, final year of entry deal and the time is now.
  13. RC Chad Butcher 2016-17 Medicine Hat (WHL). He was so good in Penticton I’m excited to see where he plays (and how well) in Bakersfield.
  14. L Evan Polei 1gp, 0-0-0 in NHL preseason.  Was impressive in Penticton and got a game in preseason, he has an impressive size/skill combination and is worth watching.
  15. R Zach O’Brien 2016-17 Wichita (ECHL). He went 32gp, 9-18-27 with the Thunder a year ago.
  16. LC Matt DeBlouw 2016-17 Wichita (ECHL). Former Calgary Flames draft pick scored 38 points in 64 games as a first year pro in 16-17.
  17. R Dave Gust 2016-17 Ohio State (NCAA). AHL contract, he scored 39gp, 18-23-41 in college last season.
  18. LC Lane Bauer 2016-17 Kamloops Blazers (WHL). Smart center plays a responsible game, he was a very late (this week) addition on a tryout.
  19. R Louick Marcotte 2016-17 Wichita (ECHL). Scored 62gp, 18-20-38 last season.
  20. R Steven Iacobellis 2016-17 UMass-Amherst. Went 36gp, 8-13-21 in college according to elite prospects.
  21. R Istvan Sofron 2016-17 Europe. He is 29, played internationally for Hungary and there isn’t much on him.


  • OriginalPouzar

    Looking forward to seeing how the Fab Four perform and if they can each earn material minutes.

    Jones is the most NHL ready of the four but I hope he gets the full year in Bakersfield.

    Mantha impressed more than I figured – maybe it’s because he’s older than the other two CHL grduates.

    Hope Ellis runs with the next – he will see NHL time this year potentially.

    Joe G. Wasn’t as polished as I thought he’d be but I look for him to have a big year in the A wearing multiple hats – the Nuge role.

    Russell and Callahan both impressed me. Should be solid AHL players this year.

    Pulling for Butcher and Polei to earn NHL contracts on the spring.

      • OriginalPouzar

        He definitely could – I thought he’s battle with Malone for the “Lander-Role” and “all-tools” call-up guy but it seems Malone has won that spot – makes sense as Malone is older and more experienced.

        Joe G. has a career ahead of him – he’s just turned pro so giving him some time makes sense and is to be expected.

      • OriginalPouzar

        If he proves it then he will play.

        He hasn’t proven it yet as he’s never played an NHL game – LB has played a number and given the team a chance to win consistently.

        Keeping Ellis was never realistic as LB would be exposed to waivers, something they would be remiss to do after years of developing the player to where he is now.

        If LB does faulter and Ellis is having a good season, the swap will be made.

  • Depth looks pretty good. They aren’t the sexiest group but atleast we can sleep well knowing if someone gets hurt we have guys who won’t drag down the main roster guys. Nick Ellis, Caleb Jones, Ty Rattie, etc beats having guys like Denis Grebeshkov, Will Acton, and Tyler Bunz. Alot of these guys are young too soo they still have time to develop and possibly have NHL futures.

  • The Rookie

    Imagine having enough D depth that when someone is pushing for an NHL job it forces a decision of good asset management instead of trading away the best of the teams D men in hopes a younger guy can at least tread water. What a concept.