Morning Skate – Heading into the eye of the storm

Photo Source: Andy Devlin / Edmonton Oilers

The Oilers head into preseason matchup number six against the Carolina Hurricanes missing six players on their roster from the previous game. The team made the trimmings after their win on Saturday over the Jets. Once again there were no surprises with these cuts; Grayson Downing, Caleb Jones, Joey Laleggia, Ryan Mantha, Mitch Callahan, and Keegan Lowe.

That means we’re getting closer and closer to our opening night NHL roster. This has by far been one of the most exciting camps in a long time, if not the most in my lifetime. We have depth at defense, there’s a battle emerging for the backup role, and who will end up playing with Connor now that Todd has called out Strome and put Puljujarvi on the wing only to of course find success. The fighting for those last few spots on the team is getting stronger every day, we’re heading into the storm of camp.

In the blue paint

I was really hoping to see Ellis get another look, maybe in the next game because Talbot is getting another start this evening.

On the blue line

We’re going with a very NHL loaded defence tonight.

The Swedes will man the top pairing, it will be interesting to see how Klefbom does, he looked very lost at times in his last game.

Benning gets another go with Russel, this pair can be scary at times, but they seem to be adjusting to playing with one another.

I don’t understand why Fayne keeps getting games, interesting that Stanton isn’t getting another look, but Auvitu might. Simpson has looked solid this camp, he’s a sleeper for sure.

Upfront

Just like on the blue line we’re going for an NHL loaded offense that could pile up the goals depending on what the Canes ice tonight.

The pool party continues for McDavid and Maroon as they’ll get another chance to play with Jesse tonight. Man, did he ever wake up the other night when he was put on that line, I for one hope he continues to do his thing and stay with them.

The Caggiula experiment continues with Leon and Lucic tonight. Drake made some good plays in that game the other night and made some sloppy plays to go along with them. I hope he can decrease the latter of that tonight and show us that he’s ready to take on that top six role.

Strome seemed to be energized the other day when he was dropped onto Nuge and Jokkinen’s line, it looks like coach wants to see if that can continue into tonight. Nuge has looked flatter than an open can of Pepsi that’s been out for days when it comes to producing offense so far. He has made great defensive plays and played the body, but at 6 million dollars we need him to be helping on offense. Maybe he wakes up tonight with a full game alongside Strome.

Could this be our last look at Yamamoto? Todd has put him on Khaira and Letestu’s line tonight giving Kassian the night off. This isn’t a knock at 55 and 26, but those aren’t the “better” players that Todd has previously had him with. Still, this is a very energetic kid, and the youthful Yamamoto could really spice things up tonight alongside these guys.

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This is the first real lineup during this preseason that has me excited to watch a game, it’s full of legit lines that are a possibility in the regular season. Do you think that someone else should be playing, what are your thoughts on the combinations? Shoot me a tweet @nooorzy and let me know!

 

 

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