The Radish Stirkes Again…

Well, for all the things you thought might happen this off-season, this took EVERYONE by surprise. The Oilers have signed the often traded Linus Omark to a one year, two way contract worth a reported 600K. WOW. First off, I think this says a few things. Second, WOW.

For a rookie GM to make a signing like this, is nothing short of incredible. The player was snubbed by the orginization, because we were apparently filled with defensive stalwarts in the bottom 6, and shipped to the AHL. His rookie season should have been enough to get him some love, but not to be. When the time was right for him to go to Europe and show his stuff, the Oilers gave him a qualifing offer(?), effictivley retaining his rights. He won a scoring title in Switzerland, even when the league was filled with NHLer’s till late December, and still didn’t a sniff of NHL action. Some teams got returns on high end players like Mike Brown and Jarred Smithson, and Omark sat on his ass like a scrub. MacT must be able to sell ice to an eskimo to get this guy back on a two way deal for 600K. But it also shows something about Omark….

He wants to play in the best league in the world. He could make good money dominating leagues overseas, but wants a shot at the NHL. You have to respect that he’s willing to swallow some pride, and chase his dream. I actually hope he makes this team and proves a lot of people here wrong. Even if he gets dealt, I hope he sticks it to his critics. Not every player needs to be a Selke candidiate. Have you ever watched Jordan Eberle back check? Don’t worry, no one else has either. I don’t care, though. That’s not his job, and when you’re potting goals like he will be, you don’t spend a lot of time chasing the puck. Omark can contribute points, which contrary to some coaches belief (Dave Tippet), is what really wins hockey games…

Bottom line for me, Omark has NHL skill and we have a GM who saw this and acted appropriately. We will/should get some return on this investment, and that is a really good thing. Like Lloyd told Harry, “Just when I thought you couldn’t go out and do anything stupider (releasing Rajala for nothing),……… go ahead and do something like this………and TOTALLY REDEEM YOURSELF!!!!(sign Omark for league minimum)” I can’t read MacTavish for the life of me, but I’m gaining faith in him by the week. Weird, I know, but he is a refreshing change from the Tambellinni era. That really doesn’t sound as flattering as it should for some reason……

*for some reason, people keep putting Hall at center. Every time I have heard him asked that question, he says he like left wing, but will do it. He’ll do it, because he’s a team guy, but why anybody would take a player that cracked the top ten in scoring at his age, and change everything he has to do on the ice, is beyond me. Leave him at left wing and watch him prop up a center until Nuge comes back. Enough already….

*If Dallas Eakins lets him, will Boyd Gordon post any offence? I know his history, but when your coach tells you your job, you do it. Gordon played on a Capitals team where he was behind Backstromm, Laich, Fleishmann, and Nylander. He wasn’t needed for goals. In Phoneix, nobody scored goals, and Gordon was a third/fourth line center. I just wonder if he plays with guys like Hemsky, Smyth, Jones or heaven forbid, Omark, some of the offence that made him a first round pick comes out. One can dream about three scoring lines, but if guys like Gordon don’t cooperate, it’ll never happen…..

*I wonder what Ryan Smyth is thinking? His GM just keeps bring in younger, bigger , faster players to compete for the bottom 6. How bad does Smyth need to show to  get a spot? Is it press box if he falters in TC? A lot of history between him and MacT, but I don’t think the Radish will hesitate to make a tough call. I would wager Smyth is in tip top shape come September, and starts the year strong. Too much pride to start up top eating popcorn….

*The Team Canada roster will be full of controversy. Too many players, centers especially, to choose from, and the suits never seem to have the right idea. If not for the small ice, I doubt we would have ever medaled at all…..

*Hockey has started. Marco Roy, recent draft pick of the Oilers, played a preseason game the other day. Scored the GWG, and was reported to be dangerous all game. Sounds great, but before you get your hopes up, remember guys like Curtis Hamilton, Ryan Martindale, and Tobias Reider had phenomenal post draft junior seasons. It doesn’t always translate to the pros. Drafts will always take 3-5 years to shake out, even a little bit. Patience grasshopper……

*Let’s just get this season started already…..


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