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INSIDE THE OILERS
POSTED ON Thursday, 27.11.2014 / 3:02 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Trades are a part of the business of hockey. Players understand that in the media and amongst fans, trade rumours can circulate involving their name.

David Perron has been a subject of such rumours as of late. The Oilers winger brushes it off and tries to stay focused on one day at a time.

"It's just the way it goes,” Perron said. “One more day in the NHL and we keep going. There's always rumours, and obviously it's been more and more the last little while. I'm just trying to stay focused on this team and stay positive."

The Oilers acquired Perron in a trade with St. Louis on July 10, 2013.

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POSTED ON Thursday, 27.11.2014 / 2:56 PM
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Dallas Stars forward Ryan Garbutt was suspended by the NHL for two games on Thursday for his hit on Taylor Hall. From the NHL's press release:

NEW YORK (Nov. 27, 2014) – Dallas Stars forward Ryan Garbutt has been suspended for two games, without pay, for kneeing Edmonton Oilers forward Taylor Hall during NHL Game No. 319 in Dallas on Tuesday, Nov. 25, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.

The incident occurred at 12:17 of the third period. Garbutt was assessed a minor penalty for tripping.

Garbutt is considered a repeat offender under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, will forfeit $43,902.44. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

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POSTED ON Thursday, 27.11.2014 / 12:42 PM
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers
The Oilers are on the ice for morning skate in Nashville with some changes up front and on the blueline:

Forward lines:

Hall-RNH-Eberle
Yakupov-Arcobello-Purcell
Perron-Draisaitl-Joensuu
Hendricks-Gordon-Pinizzotto

Defence pairings:

Aulie-Ference
Nikitin-Fayne
Klefbom-Petry

It appears both Justin Schultz and Martin Marincin will be healthy scratches. Jesse Joensuu draws in with Luke Gazdic coming out.
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POSTED ON Wednesday, 26.11.2014 / 1:00 AM
By Ryan Frankson - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The Oilers did not get the win they desperately needed to open their road trip on Tuesday night in Dallas, losing 3-2 to the Stars, but Taylor Hall did reach a milestone in the game, scoring his 100th career goal.

With Edmonton trailing 3-1 early in the third period, Jordan Eberle found Hall with a brilliant no-look pass from behind the Dallas net, and #4 made no mistake, beating Kari Lehtonen far side to close the team within a goal. The 23-year-old hit the century mark in his 262nd career game, to go along with 138 assists.

"I'm very proud of Taylor Hall," Head Coach Dallas Eakins said post-game. "He's growing, he's turning into a leader right in front of us. You could argue that he's the best left-winger in the game."

Hall is the third player from the 2010 NHL Draft to join the 100-goal club, as Tyler Seguin (110) and Jeff Skinner (102) have also hit the milestone. The Oilers star only took 262 games to reach 100 goals, however, while Seguin is at 305 and Skinner has played 275. Hall's 238 points are tops in the draft class.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 25.11.2014 / 4:49 PM
By Ryan Frankson - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The Western Hockey League's Moose Jaw Warriors announced Tuesday they will retire Ryan Smyth's jersey number later this season. Smyth's #28 will be raised to the rafters on Feb. 6, 2015, as he joins Kelly Buchberger, Mike Keane and Theo Fleury as the only Warriors to have their numbers retired.

"On behalf of the Moose Jaw Warriors Board of Directors, Management, Coaches, Players, Staff, and our fans, we would like to congratulate Ryan Smyth on the retiring of his Warriors number," Warriors Governor and President Chad Taylor said in a release. "Ryan played the game with heart, determination and character, all of which are what we feel best describes what it takes to be a Moose Jaw Warrior."

Smyth was drafted by the Warriors in the second round (21st overall) during the 1991 WHL Bantam Draft. He went on to play for Moose Jaw from 1992 to 1995, and in 188 regular season games he scored 110 goals and 224 total points, putting him 12th on the Warriors all-time scoring list. Smyth was drafted by the Oilers from Moose Jaw in 1994 (sixth overall) following a season that saw him score 50 goals and 105 points in 72 games.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 25.11.2014 / 4:47 PM
By Ryan Frankson - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

When Ales Hemsky arrived for his first Dallas Stars training camp this year, there was one very familiar face in the room as he was reunited with fellow former Oilers forward Shawn Horcoff.

While Hemsky was dealt from Edmonton to Ottawa at the 2014 trade deadline and signed with Dallas in the off-season, Horcoff was traded to the Lone Star State following the 2012-13 season. The former Oilers captain said Tuesday he was quite excited to see his old linemate join him with the Stars.

"He's going to be a big part of this team for the next few years," said Horcoff, adding that Hemsky brings the Stars an additional scoring threat to complement their big guns Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin and Jason Spezza.

"When he's going, it brings that second element for us on offence and there's too many other teams who are able to do that."

Horcoff said he was consulted by Stars GM Jim Nill before the team decided to pursue signing Hemsky via free agency.

"We had lots of conversations about him," he said. "I believe in him. I've played, obviously, lots of hockey with him. He's always been a guy who doesn't shy away from being first in on the puck and going to all the hard areas. He wants to win and those are the kind of guys we're trying to get around here."

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 25.11.2014 / 4:45 PM
By Ryan Frankson - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

After a slow start to the season, former Oilers winger Ales Hemsky is finding his groove as a member of the Dallas Stars.

The 31-year-old Czech spent his first 11 NHL seasons in Oil Country before being dealt to the Ottawa Senators at the 2014 trade deadline and signing with Dallas during the off-season.

Edmonton drafted Hemsky 13th overall in 2001 and the crafty RW went on to score 477 points in 652 games with the Oilers, plus 17 more in 24 games during the team's 2006 playoff run.

Hemsky picked up an assist in his first game with the Stars on October 9, but then endured a 14-game point drought before chipping in with four helpers in the team's last five games. He had his first multi-point game with his new team on November 20, recording a pair of assists in a 3-1 win over Arizona.

"I've been playing with (Jason) Spezza again the last four or five games… things have been going better and hopefully we can build from that," he said following Tuesday's morning skate. "I'm just trying to get better every day and help the team."

Since the Oilers had already played the Senators twice prior to last season's trade deadline, this will be Hemsky's first game against his former squad.

"It'll be probably weird, but probably better to play first here than in Edmonton," said Hemsky, who's also one point away from 500 in his NHL career. "I've been having a lot of chances, but none have gone in. Hopefully tonight I can get one."

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 25.11.2014 / 4:43 PM
By Ryan Frankson - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

There will be no easing his way back into NHL action for Oilers winger Luke Gazdic.

The 25-year-old will make his season debut tonight in Dallas after off-season shoulder surgery delayed the start of his 2014-15 campaign.

As a former Stars prospect, Gazdic is familiar with Dallas' marquee body-bangers Antoine Roussel and Ryan Garbutt, and fully expects to collide with them at some point tonight in his return to action.

"I know them both well and have played with both of them," Gazdic said of his former teammates with the AHL's Texas Stars. "They're both pretty hard-nosed players who only play with one gear, so I wouldn't expect them to play with any less whether I'm in the lineup or not."

Gazdic will make his season debut on a line with rookie centre Leon Draisaitl and third-year winger Nail Yakupov. Draisaitl was on the receiving end of a hit from behind courtesy Chicago Blackhawks veteran defenceman Michal Rosival last game, and Gazdic said those incidents won't happen again without consequences as long he's on the ice.

"I can't see too many guys wanting to take an extra shot at him," said Gazdic, who had one fight (vs. Toronto's Frazer McLaren) during his five-game AHL conditioning stint earlier this season. "I'm sure I'll have his back tonight."

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POSTED ON Monday, 24.11.2014 / 5:03 PM
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Oilers Vice Chairman Bob Nicholson spoke about Pat Quinn on Monday, who passed away on Sunday.

"On behalf of the Oilers, and especially myself and my wife Lorna, we'll never forget all the great summers we had together," Nicholson began. "(Pat) will always be one of my best friends. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Quinn family."

Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins and winger Jordan Eberle also gave their thoughts on the passing of Quinn.

“It’s a sad day with the passing of a great coach, Pat Quinn. A guy that I looked up to and has been somewhat of a mentor over the years. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family,” Eakins remarked.

Jordan Eberle won a Gold Medal with Quinn at the World Junior Hockey Championship and World Under-17s.

"Pat was a guy I have fond memories of," said Eberle. "I had him in the World Juniors in 2008 and the World Under-17. I remember being 17 years old and he was our coach and walking in scared to talk to him because of the presence that he was.

"The way he conducted himself he had a lot of respect for sure. It's tough to see him go. Condolences to his family and the organization here he was a big part of, too."

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POSTED ON Monday, 24.11.2014 / 3:14 PM
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers
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INSIDE THE OILERS BLOG