TULSA, OK—A day before the 72-game journey that is the 2017-18 ECHL regular season begins in Tulsa, head coach Rob Murray turned in the roster that will open the season for the Tulsa Oilers.
The league maximum for ECHL teams is 21 players for the first month of the season, and as a result, the Oilers are carrying ten forwards, eight defensemen, and three goaltenders.
One player, Mike McKee, will start the season on reserve, and will not count toward the 21-man roster.
The following are the names of the players by position, with their contract/assignment designation in parentheses:
Forwards: Dylan Hubbs (ECHL), Christophe Lalancette (ECHL), Vladimir Nikiforov (ECHL), Adam Pleskach (ECHL), Alexandre Ranger (ECHL), Evan Richardson (ECHL), Charlie Sampair (ECHL), Justin Selman (NHL), Joey Sides (ECHL), Daniel Vernace (ECHL).
Defensemen: Dennis Brown (ECHL), Eric Drapluk (ECHL), Daniel Johnston (ECHL), Chris Joyaux (ECHL), Steven Kaunisto (ECHL), Connor Schmidt (ECHL), Dmitrii Sergeev (NHL), Tommy Vannelli (NHL).
Goaltenders: Jake Hildebrand (ECHL), Tyler Parks (ECHL), Devin Williams (ECHL).
This roster indicates the Oilers will carry three goalies on the roster to open the season, which is notable considering the excellent camps Hildebrand, Parks, and Williams had.
They will also have three NHL assignments from the Oilers NHL affiliate in St. Louis (via San Antonio in the AHL) on board, Vannelli, Sergeev, and Selman.
In all, the season-opening ECHL player roster consists of four veterans (Kaunisto, Nikiforov, Pleskach, and Sides) and seven rookies (Hubbs, McKee, Parks, Richardson, Schmidt, Vernace and Williams).
From here, it’s all down to the puck drop that will begin the Tulsa Oilers fourth season in the ECHL, their 25th consecutive season as a professional hockey franchise and their tenth season as primary sports tenant of Tulsa’s BOK Center on Friday night at 7:05 pm facing the Kansas City Mavericks.