The Edmonton Oilers signed Rob Schremp yesterday, a two-way deal for one season. It’ll pay him $715,000 a season if he makes the show and $75,000 to ride buses.
Schremp as a player has an exceptional set of skills in a narrow view but is running in place in all kinds of important areas. For instance, I don’t know that there’s much doubt that Schremp’s strongest area would be on the powerplay.
The problem? Traditionally rookies don’t get a lot of powerplay time. Here’s a list of total powerplay minutes by Oiler rookies since 2000-01:
- Sam Gagner (07-08) 221:38
- MA Bergeron (03-04) 217:46
- Tom Gilbert (07-08) 185:15
- Andrew Cogliano (07-08) 166:42
- Ales Hemsky (02-03) 153:21
- Ladislav Smid (06-07) 92:10
- Mike Comrie (00-01) 84:53
And here is a list of rookies who saw significant minutes for Pat Quinn in Toronto over the last 5 seasons he was there:
- Kyle Wellwood (05-06) 262:49
- Alex Steen (05-06) 237:47
The Wellwood number is an interesting one, he ranked 5th on the Leafs among forwards that season. Wellwood played 9:28 a night at EV (4line minutes) and then looks to have played much of the season on the 2nd powerplay. That would have to be a “best case scenario” for Schremptown.
Quinn’s teams always had a couple of knuckle-draggers like Domi and Belak along with a veteran Chad Kilger-type for faceoffs and the penalty-kill. We’ll have to wait and see, and remember this is the team that kept 3 goalies for fear someone would pluck Deslauriers, but based on the sheer number of undersized forwards with proven indifference when not in possession of the puck I’d say Rob Schremp has his work cut out for him. If he makes the big club and proves useful over a long season, we’ll need to give him full credit for coming through at the last possible moment.
I think Rob Daum is the guy who said it best: “People talk about his poor skating, but he’s not a poor skater, he’s just not as aggressive as he should be when he doesn’t have the puck. He has to reinvent himself.”
Did he? Last Chance Texaco is just around the corner.