63 Days Until The Season Begins

Photo credit:Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Cam Lewis
8 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, we have Tyler Ennis, a local player who wound up with the Oilers late in his career.
Though he was passed over in the bantam draft, Tyler Ennis wound up on a Western Hockey League squad a few years later with the Medicine Hat Tigers. Ennis scored 10 points over 43 games in his rookie campaign and then broke out with 26 goals and 50 points the following season.
Being an October birthday, Ennis got one more go-around in the WHL before he was eligible for the NHL draft. He finished second in league scoring with 43 goals and fourth in points with 91. Scouting lists generally had Ennis going in the early part of the second round of the draft but the Buffalo Sabres took him with the No. 26 overall pick.
It was a rebuilding summer for the Sabres. They had missed the playoffs after back-to-back trips to the Eastern Conference Final and traded away some important veteran players for draft picks. They selected defender Tyler Myers with their own draft pick and they took Ennis with the pick they got from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Brian Campbell.

The Buffalo News Clipping From June 21, 2008.


Ennis played one more season in the WHL before making the jump to professional hockey in 2009-10. He played a handful of games in the American Hockey League, got called up to the Sabres in mid-November, and scored his first NHL goal in his first game. Ennis finished the season with 65 points in 69 games for the Portland Pirates and he added nine points in 10 games with the Sabres.
Over the next few years, Ennis emerged as a consistent producer for the Sabres, as he reached the 20-goal and 40-point plateau three times between 2010-11 and 2014-15. Ennis signed a five-year, $23 million contract with the Sabres in the summer of 2014 but only played out three of the seasons in Buffalo.
During the 2015-16 season, Ennis suffered two different concussions and appeared in just 23 games. He wasn’t the same player in 2016-17 when he returned either, as Ennis scored only 13 points in 51 games. The Sabres moved him in the following off-season along with Marcus Foligno for Jason Pominville and Marco Scandella. Ennis played one season with the Wild and the fifth year of his contract was bought out.
The Toronto Maple Leafs signed Ennis to a one-year, $650k contract as a free agent and he revitalized his career playing in the team’s bottom-six. Ennis scored 16 goals and 37 points over 51 games for the Leafs but didn’t get re-signed in the off-season. He then joined the Ottawa Senators on a one-year, $800k deal.
Ennis put together his best performance since before his concussions while in Ottawa in 2019-20. He scored 14 goals and 33 points through 66 games and the Sens dealt him to his hometown club in exchange for a fifth-round pick.
In Ennis’ first game with the Oilers, he lined up alongside Connor McDavid and picked up a goal and an assist in what wound up being an overtime loss to the Anaheim Ducks. He scored two goals and four points over nine games for the Oilers before the season was stopped because of the pandemic.
When hockey resumed with the summer bubble tournament, Ennis suffered a season-ending injury in Edmonton’s Game 3 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks. Ennis suffered a broken leg after his skate cut a rut and he crashed into the boards behind Edmonton’s net.
The Oilers brought Ennis back on a one-year deal but he struggled coming back from a major injury. He scored three goals and nine points over 30 games and wound up clearing through waivers. Ennis played one more season with the Senators in 2022-23 and his now playing overseas in Switzerland.

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