Oil Kings bolster lineup with California kid

Tyler Maxwell’s plans for U.S. Thanksgiving took a major turn Thursday, but he was thankful nonetheless.

Tyler Maxwell’s plans for U.S. Thanksgiving took a major turn Thursday, but he was thankful nonetheless.

Maxwell woke up to the news that the Edmonton Oil Kings had acquired him in a Western Hockey League trade with the Everett Silvertips, who had sent the 20-year-old forward home to Manhattan Beach, Calif., two weeks ago.

Maxwell is Everett’s all-time leading goal-scorer, but the team parted company with him earlier this month after he requested a trade.

That deal came yesterday as the Oil Kings gave up a third-round pick in the 2012 WHL bantam draft and the rights to 16-year-old defenceman Griffin Foulk, who plays major midget with the Colorado Thunderbirds.

“It’s been crazy, ever since I got the call at 9 o’clock this morning,” Maxwell said Thursday afternoon from the departure lounge at the Los Angeles airport.

“It’s good news, though. It’s been a good Thanksgiving, so far, despite having no turkey or anything. There’s been no time for that.”

Maxwell was running out of time in his four-year WHL career, and he didn’t believe the rebuilding Silvertips were the right match for his overage season. He’s confident the contending Oil Kings are compatible with his aspirations for a playoff run.

“I’ve just been waiting for a trade and it’s kind of been like a roulette wheel waiting to stop to know what team I’m going to,” he said.

“I was definitely excited when I heard Edmonton. I know it’s a good organization and they’re doing well this year.

“When I played against them last month, I thought that they were a good team. I think they have a hunger to win and that it should be a good fit for me, as well.”

An Everett fit that seemed so snug for Maxwell disintegrated this season. In a matter of weeks, he went from being the toast of Everett to an unhappy camper told to go home. Maxwell and the Silvertips went their separate ways after a rocky nine-game road trip that ended with five straight losses.

Before flying out of L.A. yesterday, he took the high road when asked about his Everett troubles, but admitted his hockey hiatus was upsetting.

“I had a good experience in Everett,” he said. “I have nothing bad to say about them. I wish things could have gone a bit differently, but I wish them the best.

“I don’t want to talk bad about anything. I just want to play hockey. That’s what I love to do.

“To not play hockey the last two weeks has definitely given me an extra hunger to get on the ice and perform well and have fun doing it. I’m looking forward to having a new start in Edmonton.”

On a personal level, he doesn’t know any Oil Kings well, but he’s most familiar with a couple of Medicine Hat Tigers — fellow Californians Emerson Etem and Matthew Konan — he expects to go up against tonight at Rexall Place.

Another hectic day is in store for Maxwell, who plans to fly to Edmonton this morning after detouring to Everett to pick up his belongings, mainly his winter clothes. That’s probably not a bad idea for the Edmonton-bound kid, fresh off “a few beach runs” in California during the past two weeks.

When he spoke with Everett general manager Doug Soetaert and Edmonton GM Bob Green in back-to-back phone calls Thursday, Maxwell was at his mother’s house in Carlsbad, San Diego, preparing for a family feast to celebrate Thanksgiving. But those dinner plans quickly moved to the back burner.

“We were making the fixings (Wednesday) night and we were going to have lunch and Thanksgiving dinner at my mom’s house,” Maxwell said. “We were cooking, went to bed, woke up and I was ready to be shipped out. So it was a bit of a change of plans.

“I had to drive up to L.A., fly to Seattle, go to Everett, and then I’ll fly to Edmonton (today). So I’m going all the way from the southern part of the West Coast all the way up north to Edmonton.”

Although he made a few trips to the beach during his unscheduled break at home, Maxwell didn’t stray far from the hockey routine.

“I’ve just been training every day, getting on the ice as much as I can and staying in game shape, because I knew that when I got the call to whatever team I was going to, I had to be prepared and ready to step into a game,” he said. “It’s just what I’ve been expecting, so I’m definitely ready for it.”

Off the ice, he’s hoping to ease the transition to an Alberta winter.

“I’m bulking up on my winter-clothes’ supply,” Maxwell said. “I’m gearing up for the winter, so it should be interesting, coming from California. I might need to pick up a pair of boots, because I’m not used to the snow.

“Fashion is definitely important to me. I have a lot of clothes, so moving from town to town is difficult for me, because I have so many clothing items. I go by the motto, ‘Look good, feel good, play good,’ so that’s important for me.”

The Oil Kings hope Maxwell wears their colours well. It’s a certainty that a good Edmonton team just got better, and it’ll be interesting to see whether other WHL teams follow suit and make similar deals.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
Red Deer now has 911 active COVID-19 cases

Central zone has 2,917 active cases

An anti-lockdown protest went ahead outside a café in central Alberta on Saturday, despite pouring rain and a pre-emptive court injunction. (Photo by The Canadian Press)
Anti-restriction protest underway in central Alberta despite injunction

A large crowd has gathered in the parking lot of the Whistle… Continue reading

Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre's expansion project is still a high priority, says Alberta Infrastructure Minister Prasad Panda. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Red Deer hospital ICU admissions stable, but rising, says surgeon

The Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre’s intensive care unit is in better… Continue reading

Alberta recorded a single-day record of over 57,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered. (Photo courtesy Alberta Health Services Twitter)
Alberta hits daily record of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered

Central zone has administered 111,735 doses of the COVID-19

FILE - A firefighter wears a mask as he drives his truck. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward, File
VIDEO: Flames rip through Edmonton-area seniors complex, but no fatalities

ST. ALBERT, Alta. — Fire has destroyed part of a retirement complex… Continue reading

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health, is setting off a social media reaction with his calls to stop non essential shopping, such as "buying sandals at Costco", with this photo of his worn sandals, which he published to social media on Saturday, May 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Dr. Robert Strang, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Nova Scotia’s top doctor sparks meme with caution on non-essential shopping

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s top doctor has launched a social media meme… Continue reading

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a technical briefing on the COVID pandemic in Canada, in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. Canada's chief public health officer is reminding Canadians even those who are fully vaccinated are not immune from transmitting the COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Tam warns that full vaccination does not equal full protection from COVID-19

Canada’s chief public health officer reminded Canadians on Saturday that even those… Continue reading

Carolina Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour conducts drills during NHL hockey training camp in Morrisville, N.C., Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
NHL relaxing virus protocols for vaccinated playoff teams

The NHL is relaxing virus protocols for teams that reach a threshold… Continue reading

Canada skip Kerri Einarson directs her teammates against Sweden in a qualification game at the Women's World Curling Championship in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, May 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Canada’s Einarson eliminated at curling worlds after 8-3 loss to Sweden’s Hasselborg

CALGARY — Canada’s Kerri Einarson was eliminated at the world women’s curling… Continue reading

Jennifer Coffman, owner of Truffle Pigs in Field, B.C., poses beside her business sign on Thursday, May 6, 2021, in this handout photo. Her restaurant and lodge have been hit hard by a closure of a section of the Trans-Canada Highway and by the British Columbia government discouraging Alberta residents from visiting during the pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Jennifer Coffman, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
‘Why we survive’: B.C. boundary towns struggle without Albertans during pandemic

Jennifer Coffman didn’t expect to get hit with a double whammy at… Continue reading

A courtroom at the Edmonton Law Courts building, in Edmonton on Friday, June 28, 2019. The effect of the coronavirus pandemic will have a lasting impact on the Canadian justice system warn a number of legal experts. The Alberta Court of Queen's Bench announced Sunday it would adjourn all scheduled trials across the province for at least 10-weeks limiting hearings to only emergency or urgent matters. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Edmonton mother found guilty of manslaughter in death of five-year-old girl

EDMONTON — An Edmonton woman was found guilty Friday of manslaughter in… Continue reading

A Statistics Canada 2016 Census mailer sits on the key board of a laptop after arriving in the mail at a residence in Ottawa, May 2, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Statistics Canada sees more demand to fill out census online during pandemic

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says the response to the census is higher… Continue reading

Travellers, who are not affected by new quarantine rules, arrive at Terminal 3 at Pearson Airport in Toronto, Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. Ottawa will create a new digital platform to help in processing immigration applications more quickly and efficiently after COVID-19 pandemic underscored the need for a faster shift to a digital immigration system, the immigration department said. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ottawa to create new system to tackle delays in processing immigration applications

Ottawa says it will create a new digital platform to help process… Continue reading

Most Read