GDB 61.0: Adam Henrique and Sam Carrick to make Oilers debut (5pm MT, SNW)

Photo credit:Gaelen Morse-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Gregor
1 month ago
Adam Henrique is the second player in Edmonton Oilers history from Brantford, Ontario. Like the first one, Wayne Gretzky, Henrique will have a #9 on the back of his jersey, but his will be #19 instead of #99. No pressure. I keed. I keed.
Henrique should be a very good addition to the Oilers. He’s on pace for a career-year with 42 points in 60 games. He’s previous highs were 51, 50 and 50. He’s been very consistent in his career producing between 38-51 points in every full season of his career. He is two goals shy of his seventh 20-goal season, and he’s a solid two-way player.
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In the past six seasons, including this one, the Anaheim Ducks have missed the playoffs and they’ve been outscored 971-764 at 5×5. They are -207 at 5×5, and in that span, Henrique was +2. No joke. His GF-GA at 5×5 went as follows:
2019: 37-34 while Ducks as a team were outscored 137-154.
2020: 45-42 while Ducks were outscored 130-150.
2021: 26-27 and Ducks outscored 100-122.
2022: 44-45 and Ducks got outscored 155-188.
2023: 35-37 while the Ducks were pummeled 143-225.
2024: 29-29 when Ducks got outscored 99-132.
When your team is -207 over a span of 436 games and you manage to be +2, I’d say you are responsible defensively. Henrique’s 18 goals put him among the 101 forwards in the NHL this season with 18+ goals. That is very good top-six production and while I suspect his goal totals will slow down a bit in Edmonton, because he had five PP goals with Anaheim, I see no reason why he can’t continue to produce at 5×5, and maybe produce a bit more playing with Leon Draisaitl and Evander Kane.
Carrick will add some much-needed aggression and physicality to the fourth line. Carrick is physical (137 hits), will fight and he has chipped in quite well offensively with eight goals. He also will be used on the penalty kill and is 51% in the faceoff dot. Ducks analyst, John Ahlers said this about Carrick: “Sam is a glue guy. His motor runs hot every night, he can kill penalties and he plays with some bite. He has had 26 fights the past three seasons. He mixes it up and agitates. He can play centre and wing.”
He isn’t a sexy addition, but he adds a dimension the Oilers didn’t have. Cup-winning teams need all types of different players, and Carrick will add some greasiness to the lineup. He possession numbers weren’t great in Anaheim, but you wonder how much of that is him, and how much was the team around him. He isn’t a defensive star, but with Mattias Janmark and Derek Ryan/Connor Brown, they have enough experience and smarts that they shouldn’t get caved in.




RNH – McDavid – Hyman
Henrique – Draisaitl – Kane
Foegele – McLeod – Perry
Janmark – Carrick – Ryan
Ekholm – Bouchard
Nurse – Desharnais
Kulak – Ceci
Henrique will start his 891st NHL game on a line with Draisaitl and Kane. He and Carrick were thrilled to be added to a Cup-contending roster, and I suspect both will have some added jump tonight.
Calvin Pickard will get the start, and that makes sense. He needs to start six games this month to keep Skinner on pace for 57 starts. I wrote about goalie starts in February and this was my projection chart at the time.
Skinner did play seven games after February 13th, although Pickard’s two starts weren’t against who I thought. Same with the back-to-back games last weekend, as Skinner played in Seattle. Who they start against isn’t as important as the number of starts for each goalie. Going with Pickard tonight is the right move. He’s played very well, and the Oilers should have no issue playing him four more times this month. Limiting Skinner to 56-58 starts will be key for the Oilers heading into the playoffs.


Gaudreau – Jenner – Roslovic
Texier – Sillinger – Nylander
Chinakov – Voronkov – Marchenko
Danforth – Kuraly – Olivier
Werenski – Boqvist
Provorov – Severson
Peeke – Gudbranson
Daniil Tarasov gets the start for the Blue Jackets. He is 5-8-2 with a .891Sv% and 3.58 GAA. The Oilers have struggled in Columbus recently, but they are riding a five-game heater and their room will be energized with the new additions. This could be a long night for Tarasov.
The Blue Jackets rank last in the eastern conference and 29th in the NHL. I’m not sure they have many pieces teams will be looking to add before tomorrow’s deadline. Jack Roslovic is a pending UFA, with a $4m cap hit. He has five goals and 22 points in 39 games. He did have 22 goals and 45 points two years ago, so maybe someone bites. The Blue Jackets would love to unload some of their depth defenders, but Andrew Peeke will likely be a buyout candidate this off-season (at only 1/3 of his $2.75m cap hit), and Jake Bean is a healthy scratch tonight. Peeke actually played forward for one game recently.


Photoshop: Tom Kostiuk
GAME DAY PREDICTION: Edmonton is rolling, and the Blue Jackets are bad. Edmonton wins by at least three goals. They win 5-1.
OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: McDavid reaches the 100-point plateau for the seventh time in his career. He has his ninth multi-point game in his last 10 games.
NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Carrick picks up his first career point v. Columbus.

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