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Oilers Give Ryan O'Marra the Call

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The Oilers have announced that Ryan O'Marra has been called up from Oklahoma City. With Taylor Hall out for two to four weeks, and Ben Eager struggling with a bad back, it was clear that the Oilers were going to need some help from Oklahoma City. The surprise is that the player they've brought in is a center. With five natural centers already healthy (Shawn Horcoff, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Sam Gagner, Eric Belanger, and Anton Lander) and in the lineup almost every night, I had expected the Oilers to bring in a winger from, and with Linus Omark, Teemu Hartikainen, and Josh Green (who's been playing mostly center on the farm) all injured, I thought that Ryan Keller, who has 17 points and +10 rating in 21 games, was going to get his shot. My second guess was Gilbert Brule given that the Oilers can't be too happy paying his salary in the minors. The guy they ended up choosing was well down the list.

From what I can tell, O'Marra hasn't been on fire. He has just 8 points in 20 games, and hasn't gotten many opportunities on a featured line. In fact, in the game that I saw in Abbotsford, he started the game on the fourth line before moving up after Josh Green was injured. So it's surprising to me that he was judged to be the best player available for recall. I can only guess that Tom Renney must see something in him.