After being shutout in consecutive games against the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Edmonton Oilers have reunited their most productive line from last season.
At practice Tuesday, Tippett had Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Leon Draisaitl and Kailer Yamamoto back together.
There it is.
— Ryan Rishaug (@TSNRyanRishaug) March 2, 2021
They played 318 minutes at 5×5 last year and were the NHL’s most productive line last year. They scored 28 goals and allowed only eight scored against them on the ice last year — a 77,8 GF% that was atop the league — and their underlying numbers supported their strong production.
They posted a 56.5 xGF% and controlled 52.1 percent of the shot attempts at 5×5.
The Oilers coaching staff didn’t reunite the trio in the bubble last summer, even when the team was struggling to score, nor did they up to this point of the season. It’s likely due to what had been a solid start to the year for Nugent-Hopkins, Connor McDavid and Jesse Puljujarvi, but the rut the Oilers have entered necessitates trying some new (or in this case old) things out.
This trio produced tons last year for the Oilers, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see them return to that this year.