Monday, October 4, 2010

Linus Omark- Are You Kidding Me?

Today the "Swedish Youtube Sensation" Linus Omark was assigned to the Oklahoma City Barons, but not without some serious parting shots. When asked if the thought the organization gave him a fair chance he responded with "I don't want to discuss that" and when asked if he thought the Oilers were the right organization for him he said "I have no comment." Another quote worth noting from him is "It's a little bit different, it's a lot of politics." Maybe it's just me but these comments come as no surprise to me from the player who was drafted in the 4th round and expected a guaranteed spot and the maximum rookie salary(translation needed). I see he didn't learn from what happened with Rob Schremp and Riley Nash.

Some would argue that he is right in his politics comment, but it was said best during the Oilers broadcast on TSN "If Linus Omark is not one of your top 6 forwards then he is a waste of a space else where on your roster." So a question to you Oiler fans, who would you put Omark above in this list: Penner, Hemsky, Eberle, Paajarvi, Hall, Brule? He could make the team ahead of Andrew Cogliano, but what would you then do with Cogs, send him to Oklahoma? He would have to clear waivers first, and I am sure at least 25 of the other 29 teams would put a claim in for him. Maybe it's just me being fed up with players who expect things to be given to them, which I suspect in this case.

It's fine to be disappointed you were cut, but to be this mad after being cut from your first camp isn't exactly the way to win over Oilers fans. I can understand if he was the first of the players sent to Oklahoma City, but the team gave him a fair shot to win a spot over some of the incumbent players, some of it might have to do with his size, I mean we cut Liam Reddox who had a tremendous camp, Omark should thank the Oilers for the opportunity, issue an apology, shut his mouth, and impress the team with his play in the minors, I suspect that none of that will be happening, so thanks for stopping by Linus, see ya in Russia next year.

20 comments:

  1. I suppose the silver lining is he'll go to Oklahoma with a chip on his shoulder and maybe that'll light a fire under him. And he refused to answer other questions so it could have been worse. I'll give the kid another chance, let him rip the AHL up and then see how he responds to a callup.

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  2. I think you are out of line on this one. Nowhere in anything he said did I see someone who "expects" to be given something. What I saw was an offensive player playing with a bunch of grunts for camp and when given a shot with like minded players, he scored 3 points. He has "earned" a shot. The man played better than most players he was battling with (Same goes for Reddox) but is a victim of politics. Exactly what he said. I'd be just as pissed knowing that I'm going to be making 20% of what I could be making, while riding the busses in the AHL because the Oilers are carrying 3 goalies and decided to keep players on the team strictly because they are bigger.

    I say good for him for voicing his displeasure. He said nothing wrong. He even said "no comment" when pressed to bitch. I'd keep him over Cogliano. Cogs would fetch a good pick in a trade.

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  3. He played fourth line minutes with dead weight linemates. At the same time he watches three other rookies get cherry assignments and get handed spots in the top 6. Omark outplayed Hall without a doubt. He has every right to be upset.

    He didn't rip the organization when he was talking to the media. He didn't seem disrespectful at all. He said no comment more than once. All things considered I think he handled the situation pretty well.

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  4. He, Omark, has a right to be upset. he came here with the idea of making the team, a good idea. He did not make it, roght or wrong. He should be angry. It is good he is angry, I do not want a guy who is not angry about not making his dream to play in the NHL. I'll bet Renny is okay with that attitude. Hey, he didn't rip the team unlike Shelly (Souray) Good luck Linus see you soon either here or somewhere else.

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  5. @ Travis
    While it's true he didn't say that today, that is the message that was conveyed to the team in April 09, based on his reaction today do you really think anything has changed since then? I think he came to camp and was expected to be given a spot, and I would assume that he was told he would be in tough to get a spot and that he might have to spend time in the AHL.

    @RyanB
    He only played with "dead weight linemates" last night, he did play good with Penner and Brule during the 2nd Vancouver game, he can do thing with offensive linemates, and while he didn't exactly rip the organization, he could have a better answer than "no comment" when asked if the Oilers organization was right for him.

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  6. ..don't kill me now. I know Hall "is the future" and all, but Omark is more NHL-ready then Hall is at this very moment. Obviously, things can change. But that doesn't change the fact that Omark proved his point during his stay in both SEL and KHL playing against "men", something Hall still hasn't. You (and now I don't specifically mean "you" as in Padre) can't honestly say that you have been more impressed by Hall this TC then Omark. Especially looking at with whom they've been lined up with.

    Hall would've profited even more of by skating some weeks in the AHL then Omark now will. Either way, we'll see them both in the NHL, it's a matter of time. Just saying Hall perhaps should've been down there and not Omark. Even though we all know that was never gonna happen, whatever we all say.

    To me, Eberle, MPS and Omark all seem more NHL-ready then Hall does. One might even go as far to put Giroux in there but for the sake of it, I won't this time. I obviously hope Hall proves me wrong though :)

    And no (before you say something) - I'm not a die-hard Omark fan who want him in the team no matter what. Just speaking my mind saying what most people doesn't seem to realize or dare to touch.

    There's the politics.

    Also, that page you're linking to (NSD.se) does not say anything about Omark demanding a guaranteed spot in the Oilers lineup last year. It's their own interpretation of what they thought. Omark have earlier said to Swedish media (and why would he say that specifically to some Swedish paper if that wasn't true?) he always wanted to play in the NHL and especially for the Edmonton Oilers, so don't come here and talk about that he's missing out on love to our club. Don't source some stupid stuff if you don't really understand or know it's real content. Omark picked KHL last year because it's a good league and he got convinced by his agent it was a chance to play one year of good hockey vs. men and some easy to cash in on. One might consider it seemed like a win-win for both Omark (at the age of 22) and the agent seeing he's now showed what he is capable of vs. good hockey players in both SEL and KHL, where at least one of the leagues should be higher rated then the AHL.

    Obviously he's disappointed, but can you blame the guy? Also, take into consideration his native language ain't English. So he got less words to use to express his feelings, then the words may come out wrong and get lost in translation.

    Sorry for being harsh. It's all about his dream of being an Oiler crashed to play in his fav. team, if only for a limited time, as he was just rejected on the last cut.

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  7. The article I posted says that he signed there because after speaking with the Oilers, they could not guarantee him a roster spot, in hindsight it would have been great for him to be over here. The way he answered the questions seems (to me at least) to say that nothing has changed since April 09.

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  8. @Brandon: So, do you actually know Swedish? What's being said on that specific page is that the author of the post (some Swedish journalist called Malin) said something more similar to "it would seem, from what we can make of this, Omark didn't like the fact he wouldn't get a guaranteed spot in the team" and 1 (one!) line where his agent is quoted saying something that could be taken from anywhere that playing in the KHL means big money and bonuses (which I guess doesn't come as a big surprise to anyone). If you search the very same paper you can also find other quotes where a certain Prendergast talks about that there are no guarantees for Omark (but he's certain Omark will do whatever it takes to play in the NHL the 10/11-season and he believes Omark got what it takes). This is being said after Prendergast met with the agent of Omark, surely Omark knows about this. And as RS the boss said. It wouldn't want a player not being upset he didn't make the team.

    And yeah, I talk back that thing with sending Hall to the minors. Somehow I forgot there for a minute he isn't eligible to play in the AHL.

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  9. What the Oilers video link provides is a diluted version of Omark's comments, in reaction to being a last-minute cut.

    I don't care if he's a "YouTube sensation", I don't care if he's played in the SEL, or the KHL. This is the National Hockey League - the NHL, and he got cut.

    Sure, be upset - you're allowed to be upset, but the way to do it is to accept it and do your job where you've been assigned, that place is the Oklahoma City Barons, in the AHL.

    Omark will surely light it up in the AHL and be one of the team leaders in points.

    What this kid's problem is, is that he's good and he knows it... He needs to learn that no matter how good he is, or thinks he is, there's always someone better.

    In this case, 23 other guys...

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  10. What some of you doesn't understand is that Oilers should be extremley happy that you got Omark in the draft during a time before scouts got there eyes on him.
    Some of you talks about that he should "shut up and earn his spot in the minors"
    Why? he is at this moment a better hockey player then Hall, MPS (omg light years), Cogliano, Brule, Gagner and Penner. He should lead oilers PP with Hemsky and Eberle. So why should he let Oilers ruin a year of his prime in AHL. If Oilers doesn't appreciate him enough, please trade him to another team, so that we who pay for the seats gets to se him.

    Dont delay his career just beacuse you got bad management. please trade him, i'm sure you get a great grinder.

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  11. I'm just sayin
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7uCLxJW1bQ

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  12. You're half right. He'll be back in Russia next year but he'll be right to leave. Players aren't indentured servants. Omark doesn't owe the Oilers anything. Since he clearly isn't part of their big plans I don't see why he should be interested in being a team player. The Oilers have disrespected him by not giving him a fair chance to make the team. If I was him I'd ride out this year and then go back to Europe. There isn't any point in serving time in the minors when the team that owns your rights has prejudged you. If they don't prove their commitment to him by calling him up and giving him regular minutes they will lose him and it will be their own damn fault.

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  13. "Maybe it's just me but these comments come as no surprise to me from the player who was drafted in the 4th round and expected a guaranteed spot and the maximum rookie salary(translation needed)."

    I'm getting sick and tired of people putting words into Linus' mouth that he's never said.
    PLEASE point me to any interview with Omark where he says he was expecting a guaranteed spot on the Oilers last season.

    Saying "I don't want to play in the AHL" is not the same thing as saying "I excpect to play in the NHL".
    In fact, even last year, Omark said "I don't want to play in the AHL, but I would do it if they just showed they believe in me".

    And that was the main reason he didn't go to North America last year.
    He was offered a contract that "wasn't even close to rookie max" (note, that doesn't mean he was actually expecting rookie max) and his AHL salary would have been way lower than even his SEL salary.
    Add to that that the Oilers hadn't even talked to him after the 2008/2009 SEL season, when he put up numbers in the SEL that only Henrik Sedin could match among players 21 or younger.
    The only thing he heard through his agent was that he was "too small" to expect a better contract and a real shot at the NHL last season.

    That is why he turned the Oilers down.
    Why not go to the KHL where he could get a chance to improve his game and possibly make the Oilers take notice, while at the same time earn more money in two weeks than he would get playing an entire season in the AHL?

    Now, I guess it is possible that the Oilers tried to talk to Linus last year, but his agent stood in the way, so Linus never heard the whole story.
    (I'm just speculating here, I don't know much about his agent's role in this.)
    But from Omark's perspective, at least, it was clear that the Oilers didn't really give a damn, and that he was way, way down on their depth chart.

    As for his comments yesterady after being cut, I see them as a purely positive sign.
    Anyone who has followed Omark throughout the years would know that critisism is something he thrives on.
    Yes, he'll bite back and might not always say "the right thing" (at least not by North American standards, where players are supposed to speak in clichés), but he's always fought on and proven people wrong in the end.
    I have no doubt he will be in the NHL full time sooner or later.

    Lastly, it would be nice if people in North America could write a piece on Omark without mentioning YouTube.
    Why not mention his true achievements instead?
    Like the fact that he's Team Sweden's top scorer over the last two seasons?
    That he's one of only two players 21 or younger who has scored more than one point per game througout the SEL regular season and playoffs?
    That he's one of only two players 21 or younger who has finished #1 in SEL and playoff scoring?
    That he scored 10 points in his first World Championships?

    There is a reason why Omark, out of the 30 Swedish players cut, is the one getting headlines in all the major Swedish newspapers, and why all the sports columnists are writing about it.
    And it has nothing to do with YouTube...

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  14. @Everyone, http://communities.canada.com/edmontonjournal/blogs/hockey/archive/2009/04/08/linus-not-available-how-about-lucy.aspx There is a article from Davis Staples with some interesting quotes from Omark:

    "It was an easy decision. Edmonton doesn't seem to believe in me."

    "Going there (Moscow) is challenging. I wasn't happy with what Edmonton offered, they haven't shown that they want me."

    "Edmonton has said that they have enough small players, that there's nothing wrong with me, but that I'm small. That doesn't feel that nice to hear, so it's not just about the money. I want to be in the NHL, not in the AHL."

    Ok I can't find the EXACT quote of Omark wanting a guaranteed roster spot, he did make it quite clear he wanted no time in the AHL.

    "Omark signed in Russia (at least in part) because he felt the organization's depth at the NHL level would mean an entire season in the minors." (from Lowetide)

    That was another sticking point for Omark in 09, he wanted no part of a 2 way deal, because he felt it would mean time in the minors. Does it really look like his attitude has changed since April 09? I sure as hell don't.

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  15. I'm the Anonymous guy you were replying to, Brandon.

    I'm pretty sure a 2-way-deal was the only deal he could get, so that in itself was hardly the problem.
    His problem was that the little feedback he got from the Oilers said that he was too small and would basically be buried in the AHL.
    (As things went, he probably would have gotten a chance last season, but that wasn't exactly something he could foresee.)

    Now trust me, there are no Swedish players who WANT to play in the AHL, when the pay is even worse than in the SEL and the bus rides are much longer.
    (Well, I guess there might be a few examples of players who see the AHL as an experience more than anything else, but they are few and far between.)
    They're WILLING to play there, though, if they see themselves having a shot at making the NHL eventually.

    Now, obviously, some players are willing to stick it out in the minors longer than others.
    And if Omark hadn't gotten "a ridiculous amount of money" and an offer to play with his childhood friend in Moscow, who knows - he might have played in the AHL last season after all.
    I believe he would have.

    As I said before, Linus doesn't always say "the right thing", or the things that people want to hear.
    I guess he could use some media training, since you're not supposed to talk like that as a professional athlete in North America.

    However, trust me, it is truly not a matter of bad attitude.
    It is simply his way of dealing with things. His defense mechanism if you will.
    He has constantly been told, ever since he was 15, that he was too small to succeed.
    Every time he's been criticized, though, he has met the criticism not just verbally, but on the ice as well.
    He has simply fought harder, played better and shut people up.

    So, he'll do his time in the AHL, don't worry.
    Proving people wrong is something he excels at, and I'm quite sure he won't quit until he's made the NHL.
    And by then he'll probably find other things to prove.

    He could use some media traing in the meantime, though. ;)

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  16. Maybe he does, but to see what he said and look at his body language, then look back at him saying the team doesn't want him, it's really hard to think he has a "me first" attitude. I could be wrong, we'll see.

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  17. Let's compare notes. Everyone on the Oilers say they want bigger guys. Omark thinks the Oilers don't intend to ever play him. Why would he ever think that? He doesn't think the Oilers believe in him. And he's right. Why should he bide his time in the AHL for a team that has no plans to use him.

    He's not some hick from Moose Jaw with no better options. Either the Oilers think he's an NHL class player, in which case he belongs on the team, or they don't, in which case they are wasting his time. In either case the one place he doesn't belong is the AHL and there is no chance he'll agree to play in the AHL again next year.

    So the Oilers have one year to figure out whether they want him, except they've already decided that they don't. There is nothing more frustrating that knowing that what you do doesn't matter. All those who say that he just needs to work hard and pay his dues are full of it. Paying your dues is an euphemism for your time is never going to come.

    The other anonymous guy

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  18. Fair enough, but let's hypothetically say he makes the team over Cogliano, Cogs gets waived and claimed then Omark doesn't produce. I think this is just a matter of Tambi doing his "assessing" he wants to assess where the team will be a few weeks/months. Maybe he makes a trade and we see Omark up here after he tears up the A. There is nothing saying the team doesn't believe in him other than the words from Omark. I wouldn't say they don't want him, they want to see how he plays in North America before making a decision. Three preseason games is not enough in my opinion.

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  19. Omark has already proved himself! it was a political decision! why should he waste a year in the ahl and a shitty team like the oilers who has make wrong decisions year after year.all the omark-haters is afraid that he make sucess with a recall.

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