TSN is reporting that Marty Reasoner has signed a contract with the Atlanta Thrashers. Reasoner has long been a favourite of mine, a player who entered the league as a high-scoring blue-collar prospect, and had to adapt his game to play a checking role. He's suffered various injuries over his career, and lost a step that he really couldn't afford to lose, but he's still been able to carve out a career as a 3rd/4th line forward, a face-off and PK ace, and a character guy in the dressing room.
Last season, Reasoner was exposed to tough opposition with awful linemates; he sank like a stone and it's hard to imagine that most players wouldn't. He's still a capable 4th line guy, and he fills a needed role in Atlanta (players who know where the defensive zone is) and is the second decent signing (depending on dollars) by Don Waddell this week.
There really wasn't a roster spot for Reasoner on this team; while his defensive awareness and veteran knowledge would have been useful, players like Kyle Brodziak and Marc Pouliot were going to be the ones getting first chance at his spot. With the glut of forwards on the Oilers, Lowe evidently decided to go with youth, and it's a defensible choice. While Reasoner would be an upgrade right now in all likelihood, at least in terms of doing things to help the team win, if not in counting numbers, next year might be a different story.
Still, Reasoner gave it everything he had as an Oiler; he missed out on the '06 run, and now he's going to miss out again as the Oilers turn a corner Still, 5 years from now, it's hard not to picture him getting an offer to work for the organization in some capacity.
To quote Lowetide:
One day not too far in the distance, Marty Reasoner will be waiting by the phone for the call from the Edmonton Oilers and it won't come.