HERSHEY, PA – In a release, the Washington Capitals announced that they have re-signed forward Liam O’Brien to a one-year, two-way deal.($650,000/$85,000).
O’Brien, who went undrafted and signed on with the Capitals for the 2014-2015 season, is no stranger to Caps fans. The left-winger has appeared in 14 games with the Caps, but has spent a majority of his time with the Bears.
In three seasons, O’Brien has become known as the guy who sticks up for his teammates. He’s racked up 358 penalty minutes in 168 regular season games with Hershey. But that’s not to say that he can’t be an offensive threat either.
Under the tenure of Troy Mann, O’Brien has become more offensive-minded, recording ten goals and 20 assists last season, his highest offensive output since turning pro. Additionally, he has improved his +/- from a -5 in 2014-2015 to a +5 this past season. While O’Brien only saw action in 64 regular season games and six playoff games this year, the native of Halifax, Nova Scotia is definitely someone the Bears would rather have with them than against them.
While it remains to be seen if O’Brien will fit into Washington’s plans, his physicality is definitely an asset, and if he’s going to continue to focus on his offensive production, he just might find himself a spot on the 4th line and surprise a bunch of people.
By Julie Beidler