Another day, more training camp cuts announced. This time the Oilers have sent seven players to Bakerfield to join the team’s AHL affiliate. The team also released Ryan Vesce who was in camp on a PTO.
The #Oilers have also released Ryan Vesce from his PTO.— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) September 28, 2016
Really there is nothing surprising in the group of players now on a plane back to the minors. Ben Betker and Greg Chase are a couple of names that a most Oilers fans likely recognize, but none of these players had a realistic shot at making the team out of camp this season. Their training camps were about trying to make a good impression and planting a seed for future camps, nothing more.
I am a little surprised to see Vesce’s name on the list of cuts though. I didn’t expect him to make the team. In fact I would have been shocked if he had, but having scored a goal and recorded three shots on net in 15 minutes on Monday night, I thought he might be given a chance to hang around a little while long. Especially given his history with Oilers coach Todd McLellan, who had this to say about him:
I gave him a strong vote of confidence when the management team talked of bringing him in. His character is off the charts. He’s a great human being to have around the locker room. He’s got a tremendous skill-set and good vision, and what he lacks in size, he makes up for in tenacity and desire. I hope he pushes somebody and earns a contract. That’s why we have PTOs.
The Oilers are in Vancouver tonight to take on the Canucks, a game that will likely be the last action of the preseason for a couple more players, so expect more cuts soon.