What an exciting day! I've had plenty of fun talking about the Oilers (and hockey in general) over the summer, but tonight we have, for the first time in almost five months, a game involving the Edmonton Oilers. And not only that, but a game that the Oilers actually have a pretty good chance of winning! We're a long way from games that count in the standings, of course, and most of the guys playing tonight won't be in the NHL on opening night, but winning still beats the alternative, and that's for sure.
Edmonton Oilers @ Vancouver Canucks
South Okanagan Event Center, Penticton, 8:30 p.m. MDT
More analysis after the jump...
Hamilton - Nugent-Hopkins - Pelss
Cornet - Lander - Rieder
Czerwonka - Martindale - Tyrvainen
Smith - Abney
Marincin - Teubert
Musil - Fedun
Gernat - Lowery
Notes from Camp:
- Todd Nelson will be behind the bench for the Oilers, and ex-Oiler coach Craig MacTavish will be there for the Canucks. In case you were wondering, MacTavish is still a great quote. From his interview yesterday: "I can't say I've got fond memories of the Canucks."
- A couple of Oiler prospects are dealing with injuries at the moment: Milan Kytnar hasn't been skating because of a sore ankle, and Travis Ewanyk isn't at camp at all because of a shoulder injury. For Ewanyk, an injury now isn't such a big deal, but for Kytnar, an injury could be devastating. There's plenty of competition for spots at center in Oklahoma City.
- This will be my first look at Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in an actual game situation, and I'm pretty excited to see what he can do. It'll no doubt be tougher sledding tonight than in the WHL, but it's also a bid step down from what he'll see in main camp.
- Interesting to see Kristians Pelss get a spot on the top scoring line in this game. I know that these lines are about as far from set as you can get, but it's a clue that the Oilers see a good deal of offesnive potential in the young Latvian.
- Let's beat the Canucks!