Preview: Oilers Rookies vs. Flames Rookies
Edmonton and Calgary renew their rivalry at the Young Stars Tournament
Start time: 8:30pm MT
Radio: 630 CHED, Oilers Radio Network and edmontonoilers.com
|4-7 / 57.1%||PP||0-5 / 0%|
|1-3 / 33.3%||PK||3-3 / 100%|
Competition and spirits should be high in a game that will, once again, feature two Northwest Division rivals. After a full team practice on Monday afternoon, the Oilers Rookies were eagerly anticipating their first test against their provincial counterparts.
- Pre-Game Report: Oilers vs. Flames
- The Other Side: Bryan Cameron
- The Other Side: Greg Nemisz
- The Other Side: Flames Goaltenders
With the later start to the game tonight, the Oilers held a full morning skate with both game-day and scratched players taking part. All players that are not in the lineup tonight against the Flames were put through the paces following practice with a workout that should prepare them well for Wednesday.
The Oilers will be dressing a much different looking team than they did on Sunday against the Canucks, with Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajarvi, Milan Kytnar, Johan Motin, and Jeremie Blain, all scratched for tonight's Northwest Division tilt.
Oklahoma City Barons head coach Todd Nelson discussed the lineup decisions and his outlook on the Battle of Alberta following the skate on Tuesday.
"We have 29 guys here and they're all just going to play two games. We want to get everyone in the lineup. They'll be back in the lineup tomorrow night, and other than that we just want to see some fresh guys that didn't play two nights ago and we'll just go from there."
"I think with the history there and they have a lot of maturity on their team as well. Our guys are going to have to be ready tonight and i think it's probably going to be more physical than we saw the other night."
With the top line from Sunday all getting the night off, the opportunity exists for other players to step in and make an immediate impression with their new role. Forward James Livingston will be getting a chance on the top line tonight and he says he's ready for the challenge and for the Battle of Alberta.
"Yeah, I'm very excited. My billet dad back in junior – he's a huge Calgary Flames fan. I texted him this morning telling him that I was playing against Calgary so he was pretty excited about that and I'm thrilled. I'm really looking forward to it."
Monday's Post-Practice Audio:
OILERS ROSTER & LINE COMBINATIONS
Kristians Pelss(63) - Tyler Pitlick (68) - Drew Czerwonka (71)
Phillipe Cornet (51) - Ryan Martindale (66) - Mike Thomas (59)
Teemu Hartikainen (56) - Chase Schaber (74) - Cameron Abney (53)
Brandon Davidson (60) - Martin Marincin (70)
Dominik Schlumpf (72) - Alex Plante (48)
Jordan Bendfeld (55) - Nolan Toigo (73)
Tyler Bunz (1)
• In an organization that eagerly wants to develop more centres across the board, the emergence of Tyler Pitlick could be essential. Although he didn't have the star factor that Paajarvi, Hall or Eberle did on Sunday night, Pitlick acquitted himself well and played a fantastic game at both ends of the ice. Aside from picking up a goal in the 4-1 victory, Pitlick displayed excellent energy and enthusiasm on the forecheck which resulted in quality scoring chances. Pitlick will surely want to continue his strong start and bring even more energy to the Battle of Alberta.
> View Pitlick’s career stats and bio
• New season, new philosophy. In an organizational effort to get bigger in all positions, 6'4" 187lb defenceman Martin Marincin was one of the first to fall into this category after being selected by Oilers 46th overall in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. Marincin had a quiet, but solid night on Sunday versus the Canucks. With the Oilers' current depth on defence, Marincin should be looking to take full opportunity of his chances to make good impressions with Oilers management. There's no better forum than the Battle of Alberta to show what you've got.
> View Marincin’s career stats and bio
• If you're looking for a player with hunger entering main camp as he aims to push for a roster spot, look no further than Teemu Hartikainen. Although his work didn't show up on the scoresheet, Hartikainen was easily one of the best Oiler forwards on Sunday night. A tremendous work ethic down low proved incredibly dangerous, as he was nearly impossible to move off the puck all night. In addition to his spade work in the tough areas, he showed good hands when he went to the net on a few occassions. Look for Hartikainen to continue his strong play and perhaps even chip in offensively against the Flames Rookies.
> View Hartikainen’s career stats and bio
For more information on the Oilers prospects, visit Edmonton's Young Stars Preview page.
38 Logan MacMillan
39 Cameron Bryan
46 Carter Bancks
47 Jon Rheault
48 Greg Nemisz
52 Mitch Wahl
57 Lance Buouma
59 Max Reinhart
60 Mikael Backlund
64 Ryan Howse
65 Henrik Bjorklund
68 Spencer Bennett
71 Gaelan Patterson
73 Ryley Grantham
74 Hugo Carpentier
75 John Armstrong
78 Patrick Holland
79 Michael Ferland
43 Keith Seabrook
45 Joey Leach
50 Giffen Nyren
54 Chris Been
61 John Negrin
63 Josh Meyers
66 TJ Brodie
70 Matt Clake
1 Cam Lanigan
33 Leland Irving
36 Matt Keetley
• Flames top prospect Mikael Backlund is perhaps the most NHL-ready of all the rookies showcasing their skills in Penticton. Having played in 23 NHL games last year and spending the bulk of the season with the the AHL's Abbotsford Heat, Backlund will want to continue his strong showing at camp to earn a full-time spot on the Flames roster come early October. Backlund brings a wealth of experience to this tournament, and his battle against some of the younger Oilers prospects should bring about a dynamic offensive battle for provincial bragging rights.
> View Backlund’s career stats and bio
• Calgary's defensive depth took a hit when Keith Aulie was traded to Toronto earlier this year. But for a guy like John Negrin, the opportunity exists for him to really establish himself in the Flames system. While Negrin's offensive game still needs seasoning, his skating, puck movement and defensive game have been progressing nicely. At 6'2" 190 lbs, Negrin has been counted on in a shutdown role in recent seasons. Against the creative offense of the Oilers Rookies, this could be an excellent test for the young defender.
> View Negrin’s career stats and bio
For more information on the Flames prospects, visit Calgary's Young Stars Preview page.
Tournament packages, which include a ticket to each of the eight games, are available for purchase, starting at $66 plus applicable fees. Tournament ticket packages are available online at www.valleyfirstTIX.com, by phone at 1-877-763-2849, or in person at the South Okanagan Events Centre box office. Single game tournament tickets are also available.
Stay tuned to edmontonoilers.com throughout the week, as we will provide live game updates, post-game stories and reaction, as well off-day features to bring you the most comprehensive coverage of the 2010 Young Stars Tournament.
Author: Ryan Dittrick | edmontonoilers.com