Sunday Scaries: The return of Sam Gagner, season predictions, and the Oilersnation Open

Edmonton Oilers Sam Gagner
Photo credit:Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Kylie Salai
10 months ago
Happy Sunday to all who celebrate!

The third time’s the charm

Sam Gagner must be hoping so too. The 34-year-old ‘London Boy‘ will be making his third trip to Edmonton after the Oilers announced that they had officially signed the 6th overall pick to a PTO. Looking back on his previous stints with the Oilers is heartwarming because for myself and many people around my age (21)  it takes us back to our childhood. Even better is that there’s a real chance that Gagner could turn this PTO into a contract. And when he spoke to the guys on the Real Life Podcast, he could not make it more clear that this is where he and his family want to be.
In case you forgot, Gagner played his first seven NHL Seasons with the Oilers before eventually being traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning and then the Arizona Coyotes. He spent five years away from Edmonton playing between Arizona, Philadelphia, Columbus, and Vancouver before returning to Edmonton for a brief stint in 2018. This stay in Edmonton was much shorter than the first as he was dealt at the 2020 trade deadline for Athanasiou who played a whopping total of nine games for the Oilers.  After three years in Detroit, and one in Winnipeg, along with many rumours of him returning to Edmonton that hadn’t come true, you’d think the writing was on the wall for the Oilers and Gagner. Wrong. Or, potentially wrong anyway.
Of course, he was only signed to a PTO, however, he knows this team and organization very well and vice versa. I’m sure he knows as well, if not better than anyone how to crack the roster this season. He can be signed to a league minimum contract, which we all know Ken Holland has been loving this off-season and we know we are getting a veteran player, who clearly loves this city that will play his whole entire heart out every chance he is given.
I see no issues with signing him to this PTO, and if he makes the roster for $775k, I think that will make staff, players, fans, and Sam all very happy.
It’s finally September, which means hockey season is right, and I cannot stress this enough, RIGHT around the corner.
So out of pure excitement, I wanted to start giving some of my predictions for the season.
There are eight pre-season games spanning from September 24th to October 6th playing the Jets, Canucks, Flames, and Kraken two times each. I truly don’t care too much about the pre-season games unless something outrageous happens, but one thing I will say is eight games is way too many. Especially when those games have roster parameters that prevent you from just dressing your rookies and sending them on their way. Anyway, all this to say I’m not making ore season predictions.
These are my predictions for the season:
  • Connor McDavid: New career high points again. He had 153 last season and I think he has 160 in him this season.
  • Leon Draisaitl: I think he will be the NHL’s next 60-goal scorer.
  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins: Lots of people are saying that he can’t repeat his 100-point season but I think they’re wrong. I think our newest dad is going to give a good first impression to Lennon Ayla.
  • Jack Campbell will bounce back like crazy. He’s been very hard on himself about last year so I’m sure he will be trying his best to get back to the top of his game. And that’s not to say he wasn’t trying his best last season, but at some points, it definitely didn’t seem like it.
  • Dylan Holloway will start to establish himself as an everyday player.  As an almost guaranteed roster player this year due to our cap situation, I’m sure that he will be given many more opportunities to shine this season. His play last season was pretty lackluster, but I could see him scoring 30 points or close to it this season, which would be up 21 from last season.
  • The Oilers will skip their winter slump this year. I’m manifesting this one right now.
  • The Oilers clinch first in the Pacific Division. Last year, I put money on TWO future bets: Vegas to miss the playoffs and the Oilers to finish first in the Pacific — you tell me how well that worked out. I’ve learned not to bet against Vegas, but I do think there’s a good chance that the Oilers can lead their division in 2023-24 with a full year of Ekholm. I know that expecting one player to have this big of an impact might sound silly, but that’s just the type of player he is.
  • As a non-Oilers prediction, I think the Devils will finish first in their division, and possibly even first in the Eastern Conference. They were a sneaky good team last year and I think they’ll only get better.
  • Oilers vs. Devils Stanley Cup Final??? who knows…

The Oilersnation Open!!

On Friday, we hosted the 5th annual Oilersnation Open in support of Gregor’s Grads.
If you weren’t able to make it, you definitely missed out! Our sponsors were beyond amazing, we had free drinks galore, we watched some great golf, and had so much fun while we were at it.
Team ON Everyday (Tyler & Liam) had a side bet with team ON Real Life (Jay and Chalmers), which was pretty heated all day and the reveal of what happened will be pretty fun for everyone to hear.
As someone who was driving around the course all day and talked to almost every group there, I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who came out and made this golf tournament incredible. We had so much fun as staff, so I can imagine that actually golfing made for quite the perfect day. As Taylor Swift would say, “I had the time of my life with you.”

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