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Why Did The Oilers Have An Open Training Camp?

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He deserved a job.
He deserved a job.

The Oilers announced yesterday Shawn Belle, Alexandre Giroux, Ryan O'Marra, Ben Ondrus, Richard Petiot and Liam Reddox had been waived, and today we learned that all six players have cleared waivers. The Oilers also designated Linus Omark and Chris Vande Velde for assignment to Oklahoma City. A look at the initial break out of Training Camp scrimmage teams shows that 8, 8 and 8 players remain from those teams. What, exactly, was the point of training camp?

The A Team

Dustin Penner / Sam Gagner / Ales Hemsky

----- ----------- / ---- ------ / Zack Stortini

----- ------- / ----- ------- / --- ------

-------- ------ / ----- ------ / ------- -----

Jean-Francois Jacques



Ryan Whitney / ---- -----

Jason Strudwick / ------- -----

------- -------- / ------ ---------

------ --------



Devan Dubnyk / ----- ------





The B Team

Magnus Paajarvi / Andrew Cogliano / Gilbert Brule

--------- ------ / ---- ------- / ----- --------

------ -------- / ---- ----- / ---- ------

Steve MacIntyre / ---- ---------- / ----- ----------

----- -----



Theo Peckham / Tom Gilbert

------- ------ / ---- ------

------ -------- / ---- ------

----- -----



Jeff Deslauriers / Nikolai Khabibulin / ----- ----





The C Team

Taylor Hall / Shawn Horcoff / Jordan Eberle

Ryan Jones / Colin Fraser / ----- -----

------- ------- / ----- ----- ----- / --------- -----

----- -------- / ---- --------- / ---- ---------



Ladislav Smid / ------ -------

Jim Vandermeer / Kurtis Foster

----- ----- / ----- -----



------ ------ / ------- ---

Oilers' management knew exactly who was going to be on the roster from the beginning, and even carved up the scrimmage squads to reflect their pre-determined roster, yet they went through the charade of an "open competition" anyway. Why?

I've got no problem with the Oilers setting the lineup prior to camp, but if that's the case, maybe the public line from Tambellini and Renney should have been something akin to "We have a group of guys we are counting on to contribute in Edmonton this year and we hope that someone in camp will surprise us and steal a spot." At least it's honest - something that the management team has struggled with in recent years. Giving the fans and players a false sense of what this preseason was all about causes nothing but distrust and anger, and Linus Omark rightly called the Oilers on it when he said, "It is a little different. There is a lot of politics here." There's lots of other stuff here too, Linus.

Yet again, Edmonton management had the chance to do and say the right thing and set proper expectations for fans and players. They didn't. Heck, even Tom Renney seemed confused by the way decisions were made when he discussed having three goalies still on the roster: “Is it ideal for me? No. Is it ideal for the organization? Absolutely. I trust Steve and his judgment.”

Again and again the Oilers throw away chances to show the world they look like they know what they're doing. Saying one thing and doing the exact opposite is just more fuel for the fire to burn management in effigy.