Eric O’Dell
Image: NHL

Eric O’Dell

Hometown:

Ottawa Ontario

Currently Playing In:

Pro

Birthday:

1990-06-21

Position:

C

Eligible for draft:

2008

Shoots:

Right

Drafted:

2008

Height:

6-0

Acquired:

Trade with Anaheim, 2009

Weight:

176 lbs.

Probability of Success
  • C

History

2007-08: Eric O’Dell started the season in junior hockey with Cumberland in the CJHL, having committed to play at St Cloud State University starting in the fall of 2009. In 34 games with the Grads he scored 23 goals with 23 assists. After the OHL Oshawa Generals traded his rights to Sudbury, O’Dell decided to forego college hockey and joined the Wolves in January 2008. In 26 regular season games with the OHL team, he posted 32 points (14 goals and 18 assists) to lead all Sudbury rookies and was 15th overall among rookies in scoring despite playing far fewer games. O’Dell also played for Canada’s U-18 team, scoring 1 goal and 3 assists in seven games. He was drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round (39th overall) of the 2008 draft.

2008-09: O’Dell averaged nearly a point per game in his first full season with the Wolves – scoring 33 goals with 30 assists in 65 games. He added four assists in six playoff games. The Thrashers obtained his rights in a March trade that sent Erik Christensen to Anaheim.

2009-10:While the season was disappointing one team-wise for Sudbury, O’Dell continued to develop and displayed determination and competitiveness despite often being one of the few offensive threats for the Wolves. In 68 regular season games, he scored 33 goals with 35 assists and had a pair of assists in the four Sudbury playoff games. Following the OHL season, he joined Atlanta’s AHL affiliate in Chicago, appearing in three games with no points.

2010-11: Expected to turn pro, O’Dell instead spent half the season recovering from surgery to repair a heart defect. Making a full recovery in time for the second half of the OHL season, he joined the Sudbury Wolves in December, sparking a second half surge with 20 goals and 44 points in 39 games. O’Dell scored 7 goals with 5 assists in eight playoff games as the Wolves shocked OHL watchers with a sweep of the top seeded Ottawa 67’s before falling to Mississauga St. Michaels in the second round. 

2011-12: O’Dell struggled to crack a veteran lineup for Winnipeg’s AHL affiliate St. John’s and was also limited by nagging injuries in his first pro season. He played 39 games for the IceCaps, scoring 12 goals with 10 assists, and was plus-6 with 27 penalty minutes. St. John’s finished first in the Atlantic Division and reached the Eastern Conference finals. O’Dell played in three of 15 playoff games and had an even plus-minus with no points and 2 penalty minutes.

2012-13: O’Dell was the leading scorer for Winnipeg AHL affiliate St. John’s in his second pro season. He scored 29 goals with 26 assists in 59 games and was plus-9 with 26 penalty minutes. The IceCaps missed the playoffs after finishing last in the Atlantic Division. O’Dell was re-signed by the Jets to a one-year contract as a restricted free agent in July 2013.

2013-14: O’Dell made his NHL debut with the Jets in December after starting his third pro season with Winnipeg AHL affiliate St. John’s; gradually earning the trust of coach Paul Maurice, who replaced Claude Noel in mid-season. After averaging under five minutes of ice time in his first 13 games, O’Dell saw consistent ice time for Winnipeg from the middle of March until the end of the season. He scored 3 goals with 4 assists and was minus-2 with 10 penalty minutes, averaging 9:41 minutes of ice time in 30 NHL games. In 42 regular season games for St. John’s he scored 17 goals with 25 assists and was plus-9 with 35 penalty minutes. The IceCaps finished second in the Atlantic Division but reached the Eastern Conference finals, defeating Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, before falling to the Texas Stars in the Calder Cup Finals. O’Dell returned to St. John’s for the AHL playoffs and in 21 games he scored 9 goals with 5 assists and was plus-4 with 20 penalty minutes. O’Dell signed a one-year two-way contract with the Jets as a restricted free agent in July 2014. 

Talent Analysis

O'Dell has outstanding hockey sense and a pro shot. He moves the puck well and has very good on-ice vision. He must continue to add weight and build strength, as well as work on his skating. His strong suits are his passing and stickhandling skills.

Future

O'Dell is back with Winnipeg AHL affiliate St. John's to start the 2014-15 season after skating in 30 games with the Jets last season. While he continues to be one of the top scorers for St. John's, playing in all situations, his role at the NHL level would appear to be that of a two-way lower line forward who provides supplemental scoring. With the Jets struggling to score goals early in the season he could get another shot in Winnipeg before the season ends.

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