AHL influences run deep as new-look Oilers move towards opening night.
TULSA, OK.–There’s a different feel to the Tulsa Oilers training camp this time around.
Instead of a melange of journeyman players from college, other minor leagues and from overseas the Oilers this year are steeped in talent from the American Hockey League. Several returning players from last years Oilers squad spent time in the training camp of the newly formed Oklahoma City Barons AHL team last week.
Players who have recently returned to the Oiler camp from the AHL ranks include defensemen Tyler Fleck, Brennan Barker and Sean Erickson and forwards, Dan Riedel, Gary Steffes, Chris Cloud, Chad Costello, Matt Robertson and Jason Weeks.
“We had a lot of guys make strong impressions in the AHL,” Oilers coach Bruce Ramsay said. “A lot of them stayed longer than originally we thought. And that’s great for the players to get recognized, and the experience they get can only help us too. You never know what happens in the season, and a lot of these guys could get called up during the season.”
Another player who have recently returned to the Oilers include goaltender Trevor Cann, who was 11-6-1 with a 2.81 goals against average and .915 save percentage last season for the Oilers. Cann’s preseason included an appearance with the Oilers’ National Hockey League parent team, the Colorado Avalanche. He stopped all 24 shots he faced, playing half the game in a 3-1 Avalanche victory over the St. Louis Blues on September 21st.
Back to business: Oilers drop a brawl-filled exhibition to the Thunder 7-6.
Last night the Tulsa Oilers traveled to Wichita to begin their exhibition season facing the Thunder in the first of two preseason games at their respective training centers.
The teams combined for 70 penalty minutes including 56 in an especially feisty second period. Each team had a player register a hat trick (Jack Combs for the Oilers and Chris Falloon for Wichita) and Bobby Hughes scored an empty net goal for Wichita with 55 seconds left but Dain Prewitt answered back for the Oilers who had an extra attacker on the ice, with just 11 seconds left.
The other Oiler goals came from Jason Weeks and Matt Larke, while Peter Stevens, Brent Cullaton, and Daniel Tetrault also scored for Wichita.
The two teams will face off again at the Oilers Ice Center at 7pm. Tickets are $10 and will be sold at the door. The Oilers will open the 2010-11 season at home against the Wichita Thunder next Friday, October 15th at 7:30pm in the amazing BOK Center.
Tickets are on sale now at the BOK Center box office, or by calling 918-632-PUCK (7825).