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BLOG: How Nelson develops players

by Chris Wescott / Edmonton Oilers

Martin Marincin was a topic of discussion following yesterday’s practice as he has started to move forward in his development after a slow start to the season, which included assignment to Oklahoma City out of training camp.

The book on Marincin is that he can make solid defensive plays and be a reliable blueliner, but needs to work on his battle in the corners and in front of the net. Oilers Interim Coach Todd Nelson said yesterday that he showed signs of that in the Oilers last game against Minnesota, even helping his team close out the waning seconds of that one-goal victory.

Marincin has seen growth in this area as well, saying his battle is getting better.

“Yes, it’s great,” Marincin said. “I feel stronger, like I said before the season so for me it is about going to the net and being stronger in front of the net and play simple.”

For players like Marincin, who need to make adjustments to their game along their development path, Nelson thinks communication is key. After spending time in OKC working with young prospects, that’s the process Nelson says he uses to help young players like Marincin adjust to the pros and become better players.

“Besides the work on the ice that we try to get better at, I think we have to have communication and it has to be a two-way street,” Nelson said. “They have to let me know what they need help with. I can identify some things but there are other things they may want to work on so it’s just constant communication with the player and just trying to help them in certain areas. It’s not only the on-ice play, but maybe it’s the off-ice stuff as well, like getting adjusted to North America if you’re a European player. Things like that. I think it’s constant communication.”

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