The Oilers took their CBA-mandated one day off a week today, and they will be back on the ice tomorrow in Leduc. The players will get to enjoy Dallas Eakins’ on-ice beep test. “It’s brutal,” said a few players last week, but this year the test will be done at the end of practice not at the start, so the players are happy about that at least.
- Jordan Eberle just had the night off. He isn’t injured or nursing an ailment. The Oilers play Wednesday in Winnipeg and then in Saskatoon on Sunday vs. the Blackhawks. Sounds like he will dress at least once this week.
- Tyler Pitlick didn’t play either, but when he gets into the lineup, likely Wednesday, he needs to show how desperate he is to make the team. He has to stand out. He has to show the coaches he is willing to do anything to make the team.
- The Oilers didn’t discuss any PP or PK formations prior to last night’s games. The players just free-styled, but once cuts happen and they get down to more reasonable numbers they will work on the PP. It was interesting watching Nugent-Hopkins, Hall and Schultz on the PP. They had a plan and it worked. RNH wasn’t afraid to come off the hashmarks and shoot. I hope they do more of that this season.
- I couldn’t watch the game in Calgary, but the reports I received about the Oilers weren’t complimentary. They played awful, especially offensively. It is only one game, but for players on the bubble playing uninspired in front of the head coach won’t help their cause.
- Edmonton Rush defender Kyle Rubisch just won his third consecutive Defensive Player of the Year Award last night. He is the best player in Edmonton no one talks about. You should watch him play sometime. His footwork, agility and smarts are top-notch.
- Ryan Johansen has until December 1st to sign an NHL contract. If he doesn’t then he has to sit out the entire season. That won’t happen. My guess is he and the Blue Jackets reach a deal before the start of the regular season.
- The Oilers won’t be as bad as last year, because it will be almost impossible to match their horrific first 21 games.
Their record was 4-15-2.
They were outscored 80-48. They scored 35 ES goals in the first 21 games and allowed 62.
They were shorthanded 79 times and allowed 15 PP goals.
They played 13 of those games on the road.
- In their first 21 games this year they play 13 at home. They open up at home vs. the Flames. Then they play three games on the road in Vancouver, LA and Phoenix. Then they are home for seven, on the road for five and back home for five. Their travel during the first quarter of the season is very favourable.
- The Oilers were 25-29-7 in the final 61 games last year. With an improved defence and more experience up front I believe the Oilers should be around 82-88 points.
- The NFL and NBA have domestic violence policies in their CBA, and MLB and the PA are already discussing one for next season. The NHL needs to be proactive and put a policy in place ASAP, but I believe those partnered with the NHL should take a stand as well.
- You can help a great cause and see an Oilers preseason game. If you donate $20 to our “Walk A Mile In Her Shoes” campaign, you will be into three draws. One for each of the final three preseason games on September 29th, October 1st or 2nd. You can donate here. Deadline to get in the draw is 10 a.m. tomorrow. Thanks for helping to end family Violence.
Recently by Jason Gregor:
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- Hall: “I’m far from a finished product.”
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