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NESBITT, FYTEN READY TO CONTRIBUTE
By Cassie Gage,
The Oklahoma City Barons signed Derek Nesbitt and Austin Fyten to AHL contract deals this offseason. Each has several years of professional experience and should provide some veteran leadership to a team that features several newcomers. That experience will go along way as Todd Nelson continues to evaluate his team.
Nesbitt comes to Oklahoma City after playing much of the last three seasons with the Peoria Rivermen. In eight years, Nesbitt has eight stops on his resume. He’s certainly hoping he can bring his experience to the winning culture in OKC but understands he’s also one of the new kids on the block.
“It’s one thing being the oldest guy on the team,” Nesbitt said. “But, it’s another thing being the new guy, as well. You can’t come in here and just be like ‘ok, this is my team; this is how it’s going to be.’ You have to get to know everyone. You have to bring what you have from where you came from into a group that’s already established with their identity and work with that and bring it along.”
Austin Fyten played in 11 games for the Texas Stars last season after playing for the Idaho Steelheads of the ECHL. Three days into his first Barons training camp, he’s happy with how things are turning out.
“I was happy with the two scrimmages,” he said. “I went to Edmonton, as well, and that was fun to get to skate with the pro guys and see what it’s all about. It was a great experience, and I’m just looking forward to the exhibition games this weekend.”
Fyten noted the intensity of the camp and shows the product of some of that physical play. He left Tuesday’s scrimmage early after taking a high stick to the face. Wednesday’s scrimmage was faster paced than the day prior.
“Todd (Nelson) talked about it before we went on the ice (on Wednesday),” he said. “He wanted to ramp up the intensity and pace of our scrimmage. I think guys were really going hard. I think guys are starting to compete a lot harder against each other. It was good to see.”
Nesbitt also spoke of the pace and getting acclimated after arriving from camp in Edmonton.
“We had a few days off from Edmonton to travel out here,” he said. “It’s always tough getting used to the new ice and getting acclimated with everything going on around here. It’s been a good pace. We’ve had lots of really good practices around here. Lots of up and downs the ice and a good tempo.”
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