The Oilers are travelling to Florida for back-to-back games against the Panthers and Lightning this weekend. According to Jack Michaels, Pontus Aberg won’t be in the lineup on Saturday, so it’ll be the freshly-recalled Ty Rattie sliding in on the top line.
Åberg not on the ice so Rattie up on top line.— Jack Michaels (@EdmontonJack) March 16, 2018
Rattie, the former second-round pick of the St. Louis Blues who once set the all-time scoring record for Bantam AAA hockey in Alberta, has had a strong season with the Bakersfield Condors in the AHL. He’s scored 21 goals and 22 assists, which is tops on the team in both categories.
In his 36-game NHL career, Rattie has scored four goals and six assists. If he’s ever going to find himself as a scorer at the NHL level like he’s been at every other level in his career, this is his best opportunity. Connor McDavid is, well, Connor McDavid and there isn’t anybody else in the league better to play with.
That said, it’s a little puzzling that Todd McLellan is so adverse to giving Jesse Puljujarvi a shot with McDavid to close out the season. It’s strange to see guys like Pontus Aberg and Rattie who don’t really have an important role with the franchise moving forward get reps with the captain while Puljujarvi, probably the team’s only very good raw forward prospect, slugs around for 12 minutes a night on the third line.