Oilers top defensive prospect Darnell Nurse, the seventh overall pick in 2013, has been named to Team Canada’s roster for the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship.
Nurse has played 19 games for Sault Ste. Marie in the OHL this season, registering 19 points (6-13-19) and 34 penalty minutes.
The World Junior Championship will take place from December 26, 2014 to January 5, 2015 in Toronto and Montreal.
The Oilers have taken to the ice at Rexall Place for practice. Freshly recalled Anton Lander could see some work on the power play.
Power Play Units:
Hall-RNH-Eberle-Purcell-Hunt and Perron-Lander-Yakupov-Schultz-Petry
The team is working on zone entry.
Nikitin (back) is skating with the team.
The Edmonton Oilers announced today they have recalled centre Anton Lander from the American Hockey League's Oklahoma City Barons.
Lander, 23, has registered 27 points (8G, 19A), 16 penalty minutes and a plus five rating in 26 games with the Barons this season.
The 6’0”, 186-pound centre has appeared in 94 career NHL games with the Oilers, posting eight points (2G, 6A) and 18 penalty minutes.
The Oilers have taken to the ice in San Jose for practice. The lineup remains unchanged.
Same lines & pairings today at practice as last night in San Jose. Gordon between Perron & Eberle on 2nd line.— Jack Michaels (@EdmontonJack) December 19, 2014
Getaway day for the Oil, but not before a full practice at Sharks facility. Coaches changing up the routine. pic.twitter.com/zGHTU1PjLg— Tom Gazzola (@TomGazzola) December 19, 2014
Davidson has been assigned to Oklahoma City.
The Edmonton Oilers announced today they have assigned defenceman Brandon Davidson to the American Hockey League's Oklahoma City Barons.
Davidson, 23, has appeared in four games with the Oilers this season, recording eight hits and three blocked shots.
The 6’2”, 214-pound blueliner has posted three points (1G, 2A), 13 penalty minutes and a plus five rating in 14 games with the Barons this season.
Until this past Monday, Oilers interim head coach Todd Nelson was the only head coach in Oklahoma City Barons history. He gave his thoughts on the franchise announcing today that they would cease operations at the end of the season.
“It’s disappointing that things couldn’t work out. The years I’ve been there were outstanding. The people there treat you unbelievable," Nelson began. "My family loved it there and all the players really enjoyed playing there. It’s unfortunate that things didn’t work out, but it’s business.”
Nelson touched on the fact that attendance wasn't quite what they had hoped in Oklahoma City.
“They were doing an extensive job of trying to get people in the seats and it was getting better but it wasn’t as consistent as they wanted it to be.”
He was also asked by the tornadoes, which became a story the past few years, particularly when the Barons had a playoff game postponed in May 2013.
“We had a couple of close calls over the years. It’s pretty odd but just a week or so ago some tornadoes touched down. I’m not pretending to be a cagey veteran with the weather but it had an impact on everybody around there.”
The Oilers have announced that centre Leon Draisaitl will not be going to the World Juniors.
Draisaitl said after morning skate that he was happy with whatever the Oilers decided on the matter.
“Either way would be a good thing for me,” he stated.
The German centre also added that he would be rooting hard for his squad in the tournament.
“Usually the goal for a German team is to stay in the top division and that’s going to be the same this year. I hope they get it done and I’m definitely going to be cheering for them this year.”
The Oilers are on the ice for morning skate in San Jose.
Line combinations are:
- PRACTICE | Wednesday wrap up
- RAW | Boyd Gordon
- RAW | Matt Hendricks
- RAW | Todd Nelson
- MINORS MINUTE | Episode 10
Boyd Gordon's demeanour is typically all business around the rink, but the veteran centre had reason to smile on Wednesday as it looks like he'll make his return to the #Oilers lineup tomorrow against the San Jose Sharks.
"I've had a good couple days getting back into the swing of things and I'm excited to get back in." Boyd Gordon pic.twitter.com/xSh0VpJVJA— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) December 17, 2014
Gordon has missed the last five games with a sore back, but he said the ailment has felt better during practice the last few days and he’s optimistic he will be 100% ready to return tomorrow.
"I’ve had a good couple days skating with the guys and things feel pretty good, so I’m excited to get back playing," Gordon said post-practice. “Sometimes your body gets a bit run down, and it was one of those situations where I needed to take some time to get (my back) better and close to 100%. It’s felt good the last couple skates and held up pretty well. "
Since signing with the Oilers as a free agent in July 2013, the 31-year-old has suited up for 101 games, registering 28 points and leading the team with a 56.4% success rate in the faceoff circle. Gordon also brings the intangibles, like killing penalties, blocking shots and providing a calming, veteran presence to the locker room.
“It means a lot, he’s a big part of our team," said Gordon's regular linemate Matt Hendricks. “Obviously one of the best centremen in the league in terms of faceoffs and penalty killing. He’s a great leader in the room and we’ve really missed his presence."
Gordon's impending return likely means Hendricks will shift back to the wing after filling the pivot role on the Oilers grinder line. Hendricks, who was previously a semi-regular centreman in Colorado, Washington and Nashville, did quite well back in the dot, winning 56% of his draws.