OKC’s Helmer named Player of the Week

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Oklahoma City Barons defenseman Bryan Helmer has been named the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Jan. 16, 2011. Helmer recorded three goals and three assists for six points and was plus-5 in three games last week, helping the Barons to a trio of victories.

Helmer began the week on Thursday by recording two goals and an assist in a 7-2 win at Peoria, including his 520th career point to make him the AHL’s all-time leader in points by a defenseman. The next night, Helmer turned in another three-point performance with a goal and two helpers as the Barons downed the Rivermen again, 4-1. And on Saturday night in San Antonio, Helmer earned a plus-2 rating after he was on the ice for both of his club’s goals in a 2-0 win over the Rampage.

In recognition of his achievement, Helmer will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming Barons home game.

The 38-year-old Helmer has totaled three goals, seven assists, and a plus-5 rating in just six games since signing with Oklahoma City as a free agent on Jan. 7. A native of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., Helmer is now up to 123 goals and 400 assists for 523 points in 988 regular-season AHL games over an 18-year career, and he needs to appear in just 12 more contests to become the seventh player ever to reach the 1,000 mark.

Other nominees for Reebok/AHL Player of the Week include Albany center Adam Henrique, Binghamton defenseman Derek Smith, Bridgeport defenseman Brett Motherwell, Charlotte left wing Brett Sutter, Chicago defenseman Paul Postma, Connecticut right wing Chad Kolarik, Grand Rapids goaltender Jordan Pearce, Hamilton goaltender Curtis Sanford, Hershey goaltender Dany Sabourin, Houston goaltender Josh Tordjman, Lake Erie center Mark Olver, Manchester center Marc-Andre Cliche, Manitoba right wing Sergei Shirokov, Milwaukee left wing Linus Klasen, Norfolk left wing Chris Durno, Portland defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani, Providence goaltender Matt Dalton, Rochester defenseman Mike Kostka, Rockford goaltender Hannu Toivonen, Syracuse right wing Kyle Palmieri, Toronto center Mike Zigomanis, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton right wing Geoff Walker, and Worcester right wing Cam MacIntyre.

Also see: Past winners, AHL Player of the Week