SUN Hockey Pool

Schremp seizing the day

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:55 AM ET

Rob Schremp is doing everything he can to get noticed this training camp - and that means doing a lot of things that normally go unnoticed.

In his second game of the preseason, Schremp scored a beautiful goal in the shootout and added another sweet assist on a second-period power play last night against Florida, but he knows it'll be the little things that help him get a foot in the Oilers dressing room door, not the big ones.

"There's a fine line between what they're going to like, what's going to help you stick, and what's going to send you home," said Schremp, who's getting a good long look from the Oilers brass.

"I'm not too worried about offence right now. I have to prove I can play defensively and not be a liability on the ice, that's the main thing. If he doesn't trust me on the ice ..."

Then he doesn't play.

The former first round pick has always known what to do with the puck - as evidenced by the way he quarterbacked a power play from the halfboards last night, setting up Liam Reddox for Edmonton's second goal - but his play without it hasn't come as naturally. For years it didn't come at all. But he's catching on.

"Your skills can only take you so far," said Schremp, who's finally getting the message.

"I was pretty immature coming in, 19, 20, thinking you can just dangle and score goals. It's the best league in the world for a reason, you have to have something else besides hands. I realized that, playing pro the last few years in the minors. Even there your skills only got you so far."

So he's made it a point to round out his game.

"It's keeping your head focused, wanting to play defence as much as you want to play offence," he said. "It's that simple. If you don't care about defence you're not really going to try, right?"

But it's always nice to get on the scoreboard, and he looked good doing it last night.

"I still want to put some points up, so it's nice to get a goal in the shootout and get an apple (assist)," he said.


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