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Principe's Blog: Omark my Words

by Gene Principe / Edmonton Oilers
Linus Omark had a 5-game audition to start the season in Edmonton, but was sent down to OKC where he's tallied 6 goals & 16 points in an injury-shortened 2011-12 season so far.

I love Linus Omark's name. It just lends itself to so many great (I use the term loosely) puns. I went to get a bite to eat and stood in a long 'Linus'. I don't know why my nose is stuffed up but maybe it's because I have a 'Linus' problem. Honey I always tell you the truth I wouldn't 'Linus' to you. Then there's his last name. His shot was off the 'Omark'. What 'Omark' did you get on the test? 'Omark', get set, go! Alright, enough already, so he's got a great name but does he have the game to match it?

It looks like the answer to that question is on the way now that Linus has been recalled by Edmonton. It seems so long ago that I almost forgot he actually started the season in Edmonton.

Five games, no goals and no assists. He sat in the press box and then was shipped to the minors. That didn't go so well as he broke his ankle but, before being called back up, Omark did play 18 games and recorded 16 points on six goals and 10 assists. Not eye popping, which is kind of what you expect out of Omark, or at least that's what I saw on youtube and in person. As Tom Renney said Monday morning 'He's got big cookies.'

Translation: if necessary, is he's not afraid and that shows up in his game. Spinorama moves in shootouts are also part of his game. He isn't short on skill.

We've seen some of it in the 56 NHL games he has played with Edmonton. The tally is 27 points. This coming from someone selected 97th overall in the 2007 draft. This summer Omark will become a restricted free agent and Edmonton needs to make a decision. To sign or not to sign? To offer or not to offer a contract to Omark? Hard to decide that on what's been seen on the ice. Some nights if you had a pen and paper handy you might get him to sign between periods, but other nights the question marks still remain on whether he is big enough, strong enough, good enough to play with Edmonton.

Edmonton and Omark reminds me of a situation that many of us have been in before. You have a girlfriend or boyfriend. You like that person but your not quite sure you like them enough to take that next step. Then an ultimatum arrives and you don't know what to do. Spending more time together will help you decide one way or the other. That is my comparison of what's going on with the 25-year-old forward and the Oilers.

There is one month left in the season for Linus to show what he's got. It doesn't help that the Oilers have lots of top-end talent; bad timing as five years ago, it was no problem for him to fit in. Now, it's a different story. What Linus Omark has is a chance to prove to Edmonton, the NHL and himself that he can play in the league and wouldn't that be a r-Omark-able story.

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