For Oil Kings alumnus, Lane Bauer, the stakes are high: a second consecutive invite from the Edmonton Oilers isn’t an opportunity many players get.
“It’s an honour to be back for a second time,” said Bauer. I’m trying to play as hard as I can but also continue to be consistent and play my game.”
Having seen it before, Bauer is using his familiarity with the camp and the Oilers organization to his advantage.
“This year I know what to expect because I know what it’s like,” said Bauer. “I worked hard this summer in my training to become faster on the ice.”
Bauer spent four seasons with the Edmonton Oil Kings before being dealt to the Kamloops Blazers on January 5, 2017. A move that was difficult but ultimately a decision he thought helped his hockey career. Once in Kamloops, Bauer had a strong showing putting up 40 points (25 goals, 15 assists) in just 40 games played. His dominance on the ice helped the Blazers secure a playoff spot in the 2017 WHL Playoffs. The team faced off against the Kelowna Rockets in the first round, ultimately being defeated 4 games to 2. In this playoff matchup Bauer notched three points (2 goals, 1 assist) in six games played.
“Getting traded to Kamloops was the best things for me and the Oil Kings organization. It was good for me to get into a new environment and learn new skills and systems,” said Bauer. “I also think it was the best move for the Oil Kings as it allowed them to acquire younger players to grow in their system.”
Bauer believes that his hockey experience has only strengthened him as player. During his time with the Oil Kings Bauer captured 176 points (86 goals, 90 assists) in 231 games played for the organization. He was also a part of the 2014 WHL and Memorial Cup Championship team. On ice at the Young Stars Classic, Bauer continues to show confidence in his game.
“Having done this before I know now that preparation before everything is crucial. Doing all of the small things right and doing everything you can to be ready,” said Bauer. “I think I need to stick to my game. I do a good job in the face-off circle, on the penalty kill and on the rush so I need to continue to do well at those things.”
Tomorrow afternoon the Oilers Rookies face off against the Vancouver Canucks Rookies in their final matchup of the tournament. Bauer hopes to make a lasting impression.
“Every player comes here with the hopes of impressing the right people to get an opportunity.”