Abney and Hartikainen going back— Ryan Rishaug (@TSNRyanRishaug) January 31, 2014
Some news from the Oilers this morning, the team has acquired Mark Fraser from the Maple Leafs. Why the Oilers have done this I don't really know. It's certainly not because Fraser can play hockey. It could have to do with the fact that he has 204 penalty minutes in 162 career games. Or it could be because he used to play for Dallas Eakins when he coached the Marlies and is looking to turn the Oilers into Marlies West. Or maybe the Oilers thought that with a guy like Fraser in the lineup that they might be able to give up 60 shots on goal in their next game. I'm at a loss.
Going the other way are Teemu Hartikainen and Cameron Abney. The obvious loss here is Abney who, despite being a worse hockey player than Fraser, used to play for the Oil Kings. He's spent the 2013/14 season with Bakersfield in the ECHL and for some reason was given an ELC three years ago.
And then there's Hartikainen, a favourite in these parts. This season he was playing in the KHL after signing with Ufa during the offseason and his number had him atop the list of the Oilers' forwards when Derek last checked in on the Oilers' prospects. For my money giving Hartikainen a deal and not acquiring Fraser would have been a better option, but once again
functional toughness wins out.