Plante back with Falcons

DEREK VAN DIEST, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:35 AM ET

PHOENIX -- It was great while it lasted, but Alex Plante's days in the NHL have come to an end for now.

With defencemen Ladislav Smid and Steve Staios ready to draw back into the lineup tonight, the Oilers have reassigned both Plante and Taylor Chorney to the AHL's Springfield Falcons.

"It was everything I ever imagined ... it was almost overwhelming," said Plante.

"It's something that I wanted to do from a very early age and it's made me aware of what I have to do in order to stay here."

A first-round pick in 2007, Plante, 20, has spent the majority of the season with the Falcons. In 48 games with Springfield, he has two goals and seven assists and 122 penalty minutes.

In his four games with the Oilers, the native of Brandon, Man., recorded one assist.

"It was definitely an eye-opening experience," Plante said.

"It's a lot different going from the AHL to the NHL. It was a great learning experience."

The Oilers are counting on Plante developing into a top-four defenceman.

He didn't look too out of place in his time in the NHL, but still has a way to go before becoming an NHL regular.

"I felt pretty good out there," Plante said.

"Obviously, my objective was to just keep it simple. I didn't want to try to do too much and make too many mistakes.

"I was glad I had the opportunity to come up here."

ICE CHIPS: The Oilers are expected to officially announce their new AHL affiliation with Oklahoma City on Tuesday, moving it from Springfield, Mass.


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