Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Oilers Top 20 Prospects, #12 C Ryan O'Marra

Only holding the 12th spot at the moment because I am sticking to my top 20 list from September 15th, O'Marra still hasn't put his stamp on the AHL game with the Falcons.

From the same draft as Andrew Cogliano, Gilbert Brule, and Slava Trukhno, O'Marra is by far the least established of the group. A once highly touted prospect in the Islanders organization, O'Marra was deemed as a "safe" pick to be an NHLer. One could even argue that at the time of the Ryan Smyth trade that returned O'Marra, Robert Nilsson, and the NYI's '07 1st round pick (which became Alex Plante) that O'Marra was the key to the deal.

At this point in time, I'd say that he could very well be at the bottom of the heap. To be fair, the Oilers organization appears to be hell bent on turning O'Marra into a 3rd or 4th line checking center. However he's producing like a 3rd or 4th liner, an AHL 3rd or 4th liner.

In a similar situation to Kyle Brodziak in Edmonton, O'Marra often times gets saddled with goons and grinders on his line. However he does play a key role on the penalty kill, and is solid in the dot. Maybe a bump up in terms of linemates could put him in a better position to become more of an impact player at the AHL level. However in the mean time, it would be nice to see O'Marra pick up his physical play if his offensive game remains dormant.

This is a very big season for Ryan O'Marra, with Tyler Spurgeon, Tim Sestito, Ryan Potulny, and possibly Gilbert Brule ahead of him at center, O'Marra will be in a dog fight for quality icetime this season. Not exactly what most would expect of a 2nd year pro with a 15th overall draft pedigree.


oilerdiehard said...

Pretty fair post Bryan. Thanks.

I thought he was looking good in the game I watched recently. He had a minimum of 1 hit per shift. I have not seen him play as much as you so I will have to defer to you a bit on this. But I would love to see what his hit totals are on the season. Did he just start taking the body this much recently?

Bryanbryoil said...

To be honest I didn't think that he played THAT well. However both you and another person that watched the game felt that he played well. I will make it a point to focus in on him this weekend.

He really shouldn't be playing "well" at this point, he should be one of the best players on the team, unfortunately he's not. At least right now anyway.