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1 Day Until The Season Begins

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Cam Lewis
6 months ago
Throughout the summer and into the fall, we’ll be counting down the days until the Edmonton Oilers begin their 2023-24 season with a daily trip down memory lane. Today at No. 1 we have Mike Morrison, also known as the shootout specialist.
The Oilers selected Morrison in the seventh round of the 1998 draft out of Phillips Exeter Academy, a prep high school in the United States. He played four seasons with the University of Maine, highlighted by an NCAA Championship in 1998-99 and a Hockey East First Team All-Star selection in 2001-02.
Morrison signed with the Oilers and made his professional debut in 2002-03 with their ECHL affiliate, the Columbus Cottonmouths. He spent the 2003-04 season in the AHL with the Toronto Roadrunners and then split the 2004-05 season between the AHL and ECHL while the NHL was locked out.
The Oilers didn’t have a dedicated minor-league affiliate for the 2005-06 season so Morrison started off the year in the ECHL but was called up to the NHL club in November because the tandem of Ty Conklin and Jussi Markkanen was struggling.

Edmonton Journal Newspaper Clipping From November 15, 2005.

Morrison made his NHL debut in relief of Markkanen and stopped three of three shots in a losing effort. His first start gave Oilers fans some optimism that their goaltending issues were solved, as Morrison stopped 31 of 33 shots in a 5-2 win over the Colorado Avalanche.
The Oilers rotated between Morrison, Markkanen, and Conklin as a three-headed tandem with mixed results. Either Markkanen or Conklin would sit in the stands so that Morrison could be on the bench as the team’s shootout specialist. He would be brought into games after overtime came to an end just to play the shootout and stopped 18 of the 24 shootout shots he faced in his career.
Come trade deadline time, the Oilers shored up their goaltending by trading for Dwayne Roloson from the Minnesota Wild. Morrison wound up going on waivers to make room for Roloson and he was claimed by the Ottawa Senators. He posted an .882 save percentage over 25 games between the Oilers and Sens in 2005-06.
Morrison signed as a free agent with the Arizona Coyotes the following off-season. He played four games with the team in October of 2006, was waived after allowing 13 goals on 62 shots, and spent the rest of the year between the AHL and ECHL. Morrison played three more professional seasons before retiring in 2010.

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