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Saturday (Sunday) Sunshine: The German Goodness

It’s Sunday, not Saturday and the sunshine is still shining brightly through those smokey clouds. Last week we were treated to a little defensive sunshine boy, and this week we will hop back up to the front lines. Let us pop on that old familiar jam from Burt and sit back, kick up those heels because sliding in bring some of that sunshine glow to your Sunday vibes, Leon Draisaitl.

The one they call Neon Leon came to Edmonton in 2014 and has had Oilers fans giddy since about having a big C man behind the star centre for the first time since Arnott and Weight. The coach has seen things a little different, and can you blame him? Connor and Leon together have been one of the best duos in the league at even strength. As the highest scoring duo in the NHL in 2016-17 it was hard to try and separate the dynamic dup but they did try. It didn’t last long, as the combo of Maroon, McDavid and Draisaitl was the most used line for the 2017-18 season. So the search is on for his linemates.

Draisaitl’s Wingman

The emergence of the McNuge connection has made Leon on the top line overkill (if not the powerplay). That said, it is an exciting time for the team. Our young German is poised to take this chance and run with it. With two top lines clicking, you just have to look the way of the Pittsburgh Penguins to see what that can do for you.

Last year, the players have admitted that they went into the season overly confident and things got off the rails early. This year, I can’t imagine that the same will happen again. The biggest reason for this is that the Oilers final preseason game will be against Leon’s home team, the Cologne Sharks. Why do I think this matters? Simply put if the boys overlook the Sharks and laid up an egg against a non-NHL team, that flight to Gothenburg to take on the Devils two days later will be a red hot one.

The other thing from the previous season is the mysterious concussion that Leon suffered was an easy way to trip up from the get. Knock on wood we will not be dealing with anything like that.

If there is something we can all agree on it would have to be that the world needs more of this:

Top 5 Leon Draisaitl goals from the 2017-18 season

With a lot more consistency in his linemates, the arrows all point up for Drai this year.

Leon Draisaitl is definitely a positive.

Soak Up All Previous Sunshine:

 

  • Big Nuggets

    Draisaitl is a good bet to crush it this year. Starting in Germany playing against his dad’s team, no concussion early in the season, knock on wood. It’s obvious he has the ability to dominate and he is entering the age bracket when players start to dominate. Only problem is his linemates. Hopefully the German chemistry is strong, or Lucic can bounce back. I have Khaira as a strong dark horse candidate to develop chemistry with Drai.

    The good news is Drai can get some softer matchups to help find success. McDavid will obviously get either top line or top shutdown line every shift, and now we have a veteran 4th line center that can play defense. That will leave Draisaitl free to find the weak spots in the other teams line up.

    • OilersBro

      Leon plays such a different game than Connor and the lines should be built accordingly. A big fore-checking line would be great to watch. Remember how sick: Lucic – Leon – Slepy was against the Ducks? Well now replace Slepy with Puljujarvi and you’ve got a very dangerous and large line that can dominate in the corners

      • Big Nuggets

        I agree, at least in theory. It’s a good line particularily for the playoffs. Draisaitl was on a completely different level during that playoff run so as long as we see more of that we’re golden.

  • AlexTheOilersFanSince2006

    The Deutschland Dangler is one hell of a hockey player and certainly worthy of being on this team. He brings value and he’s racked up 148 points in the past 2 seasons, mostly playing without McDavid. His name shouldn’t come up in any trade conversations.

    • Big Nuggets

      I agree that trading Drai would be a bad decision, but did he actually score most of his points without McDavid? I find that a little hard to believe considering how much time he spent with McDavid and how often they scored together.

  • OriginalPouzar

    Leon scored at a first line rate away from McDavid last year and do so with a revolving door of middling/tweener wingers – there is little doubt that Leon can “drive a line”.

    70 points with very little production on the PP (and we know that low PP production is not sustainable).

    I can’t wait until the 2019/20 season when McDavid and Drai have Yamamoto and Puljujarvi as their wingers – real offensive talent. Its going to be wonderful.

    Heck, we may ever get it around the turn of the calendar, on merit!

    Go Oilers!

  • OilersBro

    As a diehard Oilers fan living in Toronto, my favourite thing to do is to remind my colleagues that Leon Draisaitl has out-scored Auston Matthews each year.