Home > Edmonton Oilers > I love that little red headed bastard

I love that little red headed bastard

How can you not love Liam Reddox? At 5’11” and just 178 lbs he’s probably been told more times than he cares to count that he isn’t big enough to play in the NHL. If you made a list of the most talented players within the Oilers organization you wouldn’t find him anywhere near the top. And yet Reddox is a guy that simply gets things done when he’s inserted into the lineup.

Reddox’s games isn’t flashy but he fills his role to a tee. Last night he skated alongside Brule and Omark and even though he was on the ice for just 11:28 but he managed to contribute in that time. He made a great pass from behind the Wings net to Brule in the slot for the Oilers first goal. He skated his ass off all night and his four hits were the most any players was credited with. If you’re looking for a downside to his game last night you could find it on the Wings third goal where he probably should have picked up Draper as he was streaking to the net; but one mistake shouldn’t colour the whole game.

Reddox, like Omark, had no chance to make this club out of training camp. Fraser, Jones, and MacIntyre (for reason I simply can’t explain) were all going to get a shot here before Reddox. Jones was the only guy Reddox had any realistic chance to unseat but it was a long shot at best. Had Jones been sent to Oklahoma City he would have had to clear re-entry waivers to return to the big club;  Reddox on the other hand wouldn’t have to clear re-entry waivers and so he was the man sent down.

In his time with the Barons Reddox put up good numbers with 18-15-33 in 37 games. But that’s the AHL and Reddox just isn’t going to be able to match that kind of production in the NHL. But the beautiful thing about Reddox is that he understands that and what his role is with the Oilers. He doesn’t try to be a scorer; instead he sticks to yeoman’s work, skating hard, throwing hits, grinding the puck along the boards, and killing penalties. On most nights what Reddox contributes won’t be found on the score sheet but his contribution was valuable nonetheless.

Reddox will have to clear waivers to be reassigned to Oklahoma City so hopefully the Oilers keep him around for a while. Because he can skate, Reddox is automatically a better option for the Oilers lineup than MacIntyre. Despite the lack of success JF Jacques continues to get chances because the Oilers hope that someday he’ll figure out how to be an effective NHL player; Reddox has already figured out how to do that. And he won’t show any of the rookies any new tricks on the offensive side of the game but his work ethic and general determination are things that each of them could benefit from getting a first hand look at because while their natural skills will be enough to carry them through most nights Reddox has had to work damn hard for his chance. He has value to this team, I hope management notices it.

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