Edmonton’s first game of the preseason was a win, and the young blue all played well last evening. The two Euro forwards (Gaetan Haas and Joakim Nygard) had some wobble early before settling in, and the two yutes in net were solid in a game that lacked brilliance beyond Nuge’s stunning backhand goal.
The Athletic Edmonton features a fabulous cluster of stories (some linked below, some on the site). Great perspective from a ridiculous group of writers and analysts. Proud to be part of The Athletic, we are celebrating our 2-year anniversary this week. To mark the occasion, you can get 40% off subscriptions until Sept. 19 here.
- New Lowetide: A big night for Oilers defencemen Joel Persson, William Lagesson and Evan Bouchard
- Lowetide: Preseason 2019-20: The Oilers’ journey to respectability begins
- Lowetide: Handicapping Oilers prospect progress: The development of Ethan Bear, Caleb Jones and William Lagesson
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Eight key questions for the Oilers to solve at training camp
- Jonathan Willis: Predicting the winners of the Oilers’ top-six and top-nine forward jobs out of camp
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: In, out or on the bubble: Breaking down positional battles at Oilers camp
- New Lowetide: Evan Bouchard and the Calder Trophy: The Oilers’ pursuit of the elusive rookie award
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Alex Chiasson prepares to return to scoring form for Edmonton Oilers
- Jonathan Willis: Kyle Brodziak defied the odds, and then the Oilers, to carve out a significant NHL career
- Lowetide: Can Mikko Koskinen and Mike Smith stop enough pucks for the Oilers?
- Lowetide: Shutdown success by Darnell Nurse and Adam Larsson is a key for the Oilers in 2019-20.
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Even if he’s unsure about his return, Oilers’ Connor McDavid looks and sounds like his old self
- Lowetide: RE 19-20: How can the Oilers’ bottom six close the gap in goal differential?
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Kailer Yamamoto and Tyler Benson address respective highs and lows as Oilers rookie camp begins
- Jonathan Willis: Riley Sheahan is a prudent signing by the Oilers in more ways than one
- Jonathan Willis: Oilers’ defensive hopes will rest on the new shutdown pair of Darnell Nurse and Adam Larsson
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: With Evan Bouchard as the headliner, here are the players to watch at Oilers rookie camp
- Lowetide: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the configuration of the Oilers second line
- Lowetide: Connor McDavid’s 2019-20: Pushing for 50 goals while Dave Tippett loads up the Oilers’ top line
- Lowetide: Estimating reasonable expectations for the 2019-20 Edmonton Oilers: A difficult journey
- Jonathan Willis: How much money will Darnell Nurse make on his next NHL contract?
- Corey Pronman: Oilers No. 9 farm system.
- Lowetide: Oilers coach Dave Tippett might have to take drastic action in order to find a second outscoring line in 2019-20
- Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.
LAST NIGHT’S OILERS
LC Ryan Nugent-Hopkins: 1-0-1, 14:07 five-on-five, 78.6 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots, 2 HDSC, 2-3 five-on-five faceoffs. He was outstanding, the goal was poetry. He’s a terrific player and Oilers fans are lucky he’s never going to grow old.
LD Oscar Klefbom: 0-2-2, 18:21 five-on-five, 67.5 Corsi for five-on-five, 5 shots. He’s dreamy and healthy, so let the good times roll. As mentor he appears to be qualified.
RD Joel Persson: 0-2-2, 16:40 five-on-five, 66.7 Corsi for five-on-five, 6 shots. I wrote about him after the game for The Athletic (link above) and I think his first impression was a very good one. You need to see it deeper into camp, but he held serve.
R James Neal: 1-0-1, 12:07 five-on-five, 77.3 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots. He didn’t impact the game a lot beyond the goal, but that’s an important and difficult thing to do. I remain somewhat unconvinced about his presence on the Nuge line, but last night was a success.
R Alex Chiasson: 0-0-0, 14:13 five-on-five, 43.48 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots, 2 HDSC. A strange night for the big man, he had two great chances and was around the puck, but his line was underwater much of the evening. Trying to do too much? Not sure. Quality of linemates? Maybe.
LD Caleb Jones: 0-0-0, 16:16 five-on-five, 54.5 Corsi for five-on-five, 3 shots blocked. I liked his game, he and Benning hung out with the Haas line for 6:45 and defended well. Jones has great wheels, but also plays an intelligent game. Early on, he had a chance to move the puck behind the net to Benning, but a Jet was hovering. He waited a heartbeat, even though it meant taking a hit, then moved the puck to safety. Also marked his man later down the left side wall, didn’t prevent the pass to the slot but denied the Winnipeg forward any lane to the net.
LC Colby Cave: 13:00 at five-on-five, 52.2 Corsi for five-on-five, one shot, 8-5 faceoff circle. He looked good, although he was slow on one 10-bell chance. Set up Benson for a real nice chance and was responsible. Tippett had nice words postgame.
RD Evan Bouchard: 20:16 at five-on-five, 60.0 Corsi for five-on-five, one shot, several brilliant passes. He had an excellent game to my eye. He engaged offensively many times, but for me the best part of his game was passing in both zones. He snaps off lovely passes with pace on outlets, and his terrific pass to Nuge in the Winnipeg slot was impressive.
RC Gaetan Haas: 13:39 at five-on-five, 52.2 Corsi for five-on-five, 6-6 in the faceoff circle. He seemed to get lost in the play quite a bit, especially early. I did notice him doing a nice job of protecting the puck late in the first period, and his line seemed to find chem in the second half of the game. We need to see him again.
L Joakim Nygard: 14:27 at five-on-five, 36.4 Corsi for five-on-five, one shot and two HDSC. It took him half the game to find the range, but middle second period he sped through the neutral zone, worked for the puck behind the net and eventually helped Chiasson get a look. Had a fabulous rush and chance late in the game. He’s making noise.
R Josh Archibald: 13:31 at five-on-five, 63.6 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots and a screamer just wide of the far side late. He didn’t do a lot to get noticed beyond that shot and two giveaways.
L Jujhar Khaira: 12:46 at five-on-five, 66.7 Corsi for five-on-five, 1 shot, 1 HDSC and solid PK work. He sent a lovely pass to Chiasson for a chance, and had a great look off a Sheahan feed late. Quality penalty killing, including a nice sequence with Nuge that could have cashed.
RD Matt Benning: 17:28 at five-on-five, 57.3 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots. He made some great outlet passes, defended well and was dogged in getting possession of the puck defensively. I loved his outlet to Patrick Russell, tape-to-tape and on the fly.
R Patrick Russell: 13:28 at five-on-five, 64.3 Corsi for five-on-five, 3 shots, 1 takeaway. I thought he played very well last night, he was in good spots all night long. Active, retrieving the puck for chances and getting very good passes to linemates, he was quality.
LC Riley Sheahan: 12:49 at five-on-five, 61.9 Corsi for five-on-five, 8-7 faceoffs and a takeaway. It took some time for him to impact the game, but he played a smart 60 and very late fed Khaira for a solid chance. As was the case with pretty much all of the newcomer forwards, we need to see him again.
R Sam Gagner: 14:01 at five-on-five, 75.9 Corsi for five-on-five. He tied up a defenseman net front on the Neal goal, and kept the puck moving north. There were sequences where he had the puck in a good place and attempted passes, but overall I thought he was quiet.
L Tyler Benson: 15:07 at five-on-five, 64.3 Corsi for five-on-five, 2 shots, 1 giveaway, 1 takeaway. My goodness he was around the puck a lot, that’s a good sign. In the first he had a nice look from a Cave pass, then another from a Patrick Russell feed. Won a battle along the wall and sent the puck deep mid-second, sent a nice pass to Russell on a late two-on-one. He sped through the neutral zone multiple times, shooting the puck in and chasing. I’d like to see him gain the zone with possession, suspect we see him try it as he gets more comfortable.
L William Lagesson: 18:46 at five-on-five, 62.5 Corsi for five-on-five, 3 shots. I thought he and Bouchard were solid together, Lagesson’s ability to diffuse sorties was on display early and often. Good passing, good transporting, solid defending and he did everything with a purpose. What else is there?
G Stuart Skinner: 33:36, stopped 18 shots, including 2 high danger and five medium danger. He was excellent, very calm and at no point did he display nerves or lose his net.
G Dylan Wells: 26:24, stopped 7 shots, including 1 high danger and three medium danger. By the time he hit the ice all four lines had figured it out, but he played well in his 26 minutes.
I think everyone held serve last night, and would argue that the three blue who I wrote about for The Athletic (plus Patrick Russell) did more than that on Monday.
The opportunity tonight, for Ethan Bear, Cooper Marody, Tomas Jurco, Shane Starrett and others, is this: Tonight’s Edmonton team will be outmanned just as last night’s Jets team was coming in. So, although the quality of teammates will be lower, the quality of competition higher, but the opportunity to impress will also be elevated. Show well on the road tonight and that’s going to get noticed in a big way. Marody needs to have a good night.
Tomas Jurco—Cooper Marody—Josh Currie
Markus Granlund—Colby Cave—Patrick Russell
Tyler Benson—Ryan McLeod—Cameron Hebig
Joe Gambardella—Brad Malone—Anthony Peluso
Darnell Nurse—Adam Larsson
Dmitri Samorukov—Evan Bouchard
Brandon Manning—Ethan Bear
Shane Starrett (Dylan Wells)
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
A busy morning as we get rolling with hockey across several platforms. Jonathan Willis from The Athletic will join us at 10:20, we’ll chat about last night’s game and training camp battles. Andrew Peard, Oil Kings pbp man will also pop in for his weekly visit. I have a call in to the west coast to talk Boeser, those folks get up an hour later so stay tuned. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide twitter. Talk soon!