Mark Arcobello is taking the term ‘journeyman’ to new levels. He tied an NHL record on Friday by playing for his fourth NHL team in one season. He also scored on his first shift.
Mark Arcobello is tired of changing teams.
Now with his fourth team in 2014-15, Arcobello scored on his first shift with the Arizona Coyotes Friday in a bid to stick in the desert.
Arcobello actually tied an NHL record on Friday by suiting up for the Coyotes. He’s just the third player in league history to skate for four teams in one season, after Dennis O’Brien and Dave McLlwain.
O’Brien played for the Minnesota North Stars, Colorado Rockies, Cleveland Barons and Boston Bruins in the 1977-78 season, while McLwain skated for the Winnipeg Jets, New York Islanders, Buffalo Sabres and Toronto Maple Leafs.
That means it’s been over two decades since another player put the “journey” in “journeyman” the way Arcobello has done this year.
Edmonton Oilers Nashville Predators Pittsburgh Penguins Arizona Coyotes center made a solid first impression on Friday by beating San Jose’s Antti Niemi high to the blocker side on a wrist shot.
It was a solid debut for Arcobello, who had 16:46 of ice time and won 60 percent of his faceoffs. He finished the game with an even plus-minus as the Coyotes took a 4-2 loss.
Arcobello now has nine goals and 15 points in 51 games this season.
Or to put it another way, he scored seven goals and 12 games in 36 games for the Oilers, added a goal in four games for Nashville and picked up two assists in 10 games as a Penguin.
Add that to his one goal in one game with Arizona and you’ve get the sense of just how up-and-down Arcobello’s season has been.
“It’s been an eventful year but I’m trying to just take it in stride,” Arcobello told Fox Sports Arizona after the first period on Friday. “I’m just trying to stick on a team and hopefully find a home here.”
The 26-year-old has from Milford, Connecticut has been traded once this season and claimed off waivers twice, most recently by Arizona.
Coyotes GM Don Maloney called it a “soft” acquisition to shore up his team’s depth at center.
The Coyotes expect to be without top center Martin Hanzal for the rest of the season as he goes under the knife for back surgery.
The 5-foot-8 Arcobello is making a bargain-basement $600,000 this year and is slated to become a restricted free agent in the off-season. He’s an inexpensive spare part who can log NHL minutes and contribute a bit of speed and offense, so it’s no wonder multiple teams have been willing to take a flyer on him this season.
It’s just odd to see one player change jerseys this many times.
Arcobello signed with the Oilers as a college free agent out of Yale University back in 2011. He spent three seasons in the minors before skating in 41 games for the Oilers in last season, scoring four goals and 18 points in that stretch.
Then came this year’s roller coaster. Arcobello started the season as one of Edmonton’s few options at center before he was shipped to Nashville on Dec. 29 for Derek Roy. He played four games in Nashville before he was claimed off waivers by Pittsburgh on Jan. 14.
Less than a month later, the Pens put him on waivers again and Arizona claimed him.
Arcobello’s Twitter account shows just how wild the last few months have been. He tweeted a farewell to the Oilers on Dec. 29 as he headed to Nashville, then tweeted about joining the Coyotes on Wednesday. His Twitter photo, however, shows him wearing a Penguins uniform.
Arcobello’s still a far cry from Mike Sillinger’s 12-team, nine-trade, 17-year career, but he’s got time to catch up.
The trade deadline is still two weeks away, after all.