SUN Hockey Pool

Familiarity for Oilers call-ups

GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:07 PM ET

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Linemates with the Oklahoma City Barons at the beginning of the week, Ryan O’Marra and Linus Omark have been called up by the Edmonton Oilers where they find themselves playing together on the same line once again.

In practice Thursday, O’Marra centred Omark and Oilers left-winger Ryan Jones.

“To start with, that’s sort of our point of view, to let them play together,” said Oilers head coach Tom Renney. “And I think it’s safe to say, too, that Omark will move around a little bit and Ryan will play with some different people.

“But to start with, definitely we’re going to try it and see how it goes.”

O’Marra finds himself in a situation similar to what he went through last season.

“Last year, I got called up with Colin McDonald, who was my linemate, and this year with Linus,” O’Marra said. “Familiarity helps but at the end of the day you’re here to play to your strengths.”

Omark said the two have begun to form some on-ice chemistry in their short time together.

“I’ve played almost the whole season with him. He and I played on the same line,” Omark said. “He was injured for a couple games but when we played together it was pretty good.”

Good enough to use as a stepping stone with the Oilers, at least.

“You want to put them in a position to have success,” said Renney. “Linus is not going to play on our fourth line. It doesn’t make any sense at all. For that matter, he could move up in the lineup because that’s kind of what he is.

“Whereas Ryan is, for example, in my mind a good third- and fourth-line player, to kill penalties and really give us some size and strength up the middle and be a contributor on both sides of the puck, naturally, but be really solid for us defensively.”

– Moddejonge


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