Granlund is among the American Hockey League scoring leaders with 10 points. OKC counters with what some are saying is the most talented team in the AHL.
Barons rookie defenseman Justin Schultz (12 points) leads the AHL in scoring. He was named AHL Player of the Month after collecting 12 points in October. Oklahoma City also has six first-round NHL draft picks, including Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall, Alex Plante, Colten Teubert, Eberle and Paajarvi.
Nugent-Hopkins and Hall were taken No. 1 overall. Last year, Hall played on the Edmonton Oilers No. 1 line alongside Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle. Hall makes his Barons debut Friday night.
“He has that energy and passion in his game that many players don't,” Eberle said. “He has a huge shot, and his speed is a huge characteristic. There's a reason he went first overall.”
The Barons will play three games in three days, traveling to San Antonio on Sunday afternoon after the two home games with Houston.
“The last time (against Houston) it came down to shortcuts,” Nelson said. “I thought we made it easy for them. Our team has to be hard to play against. Last time we played them we were very soft in a lot of areas. You don't win games like that.”