POSTED ON Friday, 04.1.2016 / 4:18 PM MT
POSTED ON Friday, 04.1.2016 / 4:14 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

For a second straight month, and third this season, Oilers forward Connor McDavid has been named the NHL Rookie of the Month.

In March, McDavid led all rookies with 11 assists and 16 points in 15 games, including a seven-game point streak.

“Obviously, he’s had a good month, he’s had a good year so far,” said Oilers forward Jordan Eberle. “I don’t think I can say much to what’s already been said. He’s a dynamic player. When he’s on the ice he create chances, he creates offence and like I said before, it’s scary that he’s only 19 and he’s only going to get better.”

Since returning on February 2, after a broken clavicle sidelined the centre for 12 weeks (37 games), McDavid has made a dynamic return, making up for lost time, and has recorded 45 points in 42 games this season.

“It’s not like he came here a project by any means. He was an exceptional player as soon as he stepped on the ice and put on our jersey,” said Oilers forward Taylor Hall.

“But in saying that, to be able to [produce] month after month and game after game, especially when maybe teams weren’t playing their first d-pairing and their first line against him at the start of the year, they certainly are now every shift. So for him to play at this level it’s been fun to watch and it’s been great to see for the future of our team. Not only that I think he’s grown off the ice just as far as taking on a bigger role. He’s the youngest guy on our team but a lot of guys look up to him.”

Prior to his injury, the first-overall NHL draft pick had received Rookie of the Month for October.

Though the recognition names one individual, McDavid, humbled, sees it more as a nod to his teammates.

“I definitely take a lot of pride in it,” he said. “It’s something that I’m very happy about. It’s mostly a credit to my teammates and everyone around me. Everyone’s been playing pretty well and when everyone does that, personal success goes along with it. Definitely a credit to them.”

POSTED ON Friday, 04.1.2016 / 3:30 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

The Oilers will host the Vancouver Canucks on April 6 for their final home game in Rexall Place, before moving downtown to Rogers Place in the fall. The post-game farewell ceremony will host more than 100 Oilers alumni in attendance. Each day leading up to that game we are announcing five alumni who are scheduled to attend. Here are today’s five.

In 1982, Ken Linseman was traded to the Hartford Whalers from the Philadelphia Flyers, who in turn shuttled him on to the Oilers on the same day. In Edmonton, Linseman skated on a line with Glenn Anderson and Mark Messier. The trio, forming an effective line, along with the rest of the squad, clicked in a big way, dethroning the New York Islanders as reigning league champs in 1984 to win their first Stanley Cup. In two seasons with the Oilers, “The Rat” scored 51 goals and added 91 assists for 142 points in 144 games, as well as 29 points in 37 playoff games.

Shayne Corson was traded to the Oilers from the Montreal Canadiens in the summer of 1992. He spent three full seasons with Edmonton, filling a large leadership role and eventually becoming the team's captain. His biggest offensive season came in 1993-94, as he recorded 25 goals and 29 assists for 54 points in 64 games.

Doug Hicks made an impressive reputation for himself as an “iron man” early in his NHL career. He was claimed by the Oilers in the 1979 Expansion Draft and played two full seasons with the team before he was traded halfway through the 1981-82 season. In 186 games, Hicks recorded 17 goals and 67 assists for 84 points, and he also played in 12 post-season games.

Bernie Nicholls was known as an explosive scorer who accumulated over 1,200 career points while playing for six NHL teams. He made a dynamic impact early in his NHL career and continued to be a multi-faceted contributor to his teams. Early in the 1991-92 season, Nicholls was acquired by the Oilers from the New York Rangers in exchange for Mark Messier. Although injuries limited his participation to 49 games during his first regular season with Edmonton, he made up for lost time with 19 points in 16 playoff games in the post-season. In 95 Oilers games, Nicholls recorded 28 goals and 61 assists for 89 points.

Kevin Primeau’s first stint as an Oiler came in 1977 when he had a tryout with the team after his high-level amateur hockey career at the University of Alberta was over. He made enough of an impact with the team they he was signed to a free agent contract in March. He played out the remainder of the season with the team, collecting his first professional point, an assist, and played in two more games in the post-season. After moving on from the team, Primeau returned to the Oilers for the 1991-92 NHL season as an assistant coach and remained in that role for six seasons.

POSTED ON Friday, 04.1.2016 / 12:38 PM MT
By Chris Wescott - / Inside the Oilers

The Oilers have hit the ice at Royal Glenora Club and have a pretty full house. Once again, injured players Adam Pardy, Eric Gryba and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins are participating.

Forward lines for first drill are:


Nugent-Hopkins rotating in with the dark blue jerseys in top six. Luke Gazdic and Iiro Pakarinen also participating.

Defensive pairings:


POSTED ON Friday, 04.1.2016 / 10:05 AM MT

Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid, who led all rookies with 11 assists and 16 points in 15 games, has been named the NHL’s Rookie of the Month for March.

McDavid edged Buffalo Sabres teammates Sam Reinhart (4-8—12 in 15 GP) and Jack Eichel (6-4—10 in 14 GP), Arizona Coyotes left wing Anthony Duclair (3-7—10 in 14 GP), and St. Louis Blues center Robby Fabbri (3-6—9 in 12 GP) for the honor.

McDavid, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2015 NHL Draft, picked up at least one point in 11 of his 15 March appearances, highlighted by a seven-game point streak March 14-26 (1-9—10). He also registered five multi-point performances, led by a pair of goals – including the overtime winner – in his first NHL meeting with Eichel, the No. 2 overall pick last year, March 1.

The 19-year-old Richmond Hill, Ont., native paces all rookies – and ranks third in the NHL – with an average of 1.07 points per game this season (15-30—45 in 42 GP). McDavid also won Rookie of the Month honors in October (5-7—12 in 12 GP) and February (5-12—17 in 14 GP).

Connor McDavid in March
Date                Opponent                   G         A         PTS     Result
March 1           at Buffalo                    2          0          2          2-1 win (OT)
March 3           at Philadelphia             0          1          1          4-0 win
March 4           at Columbus                1          1          2          6-3 loss
March 6           at Winnipeg                 0          0          0          2-1 win
March 8           SAN JOSE                 0          0          0          3-0 loss
March 10         at Minnesota               1          0          1          2-1 win
March 12         ARIZONA                   0          0          0          4-0 loss
March 14         NASHVILLE                0          1          1          3-2 loss
March 16         ST. LOUIS                  0          2          2          6-4 win
March 18         VANCOUVER            0          1          1          2-0 win
March 20         COLORADO              0          1          1          3-2 loss
March 22         at Arizona                    0          2          2          4-2 loss
March 24         at San Jose                 0          1          1          6-3 win
March 26         at Los Angeles            1          1          2          6-4 loss
March 28         ANAHEIM                   0          0          0          2-1 loss
Total                                                   5          11        16        7-8-0
POSTED ON Thursday, 03.31.2016 / 5:52 PM MT
POSTED ON Thursday, 03.31.2016 / 3:30 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

The countdown continues as we approach April 6, when the Oilers host Vancouver for the team’s final game at Rexall Place. With 100+ Oilers alumni expected to be in attendance for the post-game farewell ceremony, each day leading up to the game we are announcing five alumni who are scheduled to attend. Here are today’s five.

Glenn Anderson played 16 seasons in the NHL, 11 of which were played as an Oiler. The elite-level scorer won five Stanley Cups with Edmonton. During the playoffs alone, Anderson accumulated 93 goals, 121 assists, and 214 points, the fourth, ninth, and fourth most in NHL history, respectively. Anderson is also the all-time Oilers leader in regular season game-winning goals with 72.

Craig Muni was signed by the Oilers as a free agent in the summer of 1986. He was known to be a dynamic defenceman, one who wasn’t afraid to show his physical edge on the ice or sacrifice his body to block a shot. For seven seasons, Muni took a regular shift on the Oilers blueline, winning three Stanley Cups with Edmonton. He recorded 24 goals and 87 assists for 111 points in 493 games, as well as 15 points in 83 career Oilers post-season games.

After a series of seasonal hardships due to injuries, Stan Weir joined the Oilers for their last full season in the World Hockey Association, where his hockey career began to flourish. In year two, Edmonton and Weir moved to the NHL. The transition sparked his most productive professional season, recording 66 points in 79 games. He played 11 NHL seasons altogether, three of which were spent with the Oilers, posting an overall stat-line of 139 goals and 207 assists for 346 points in 642 games, as well as 11 points in 37 post-season games.

Sean Brown joined the Oilers in a trade halfway through the 1995-96 season. He spent two years with Edmonton’s AHL affiliate team, the Hamilton Bulldogs, and was recalled occasionally by the club. The defenceman earned a permanent spot in the lineup in 1998, his third season with the organization. Altogether, the hard-nosed blueliner played six seasons with the Oilers, recording 12 goals and 23 assists for 35 points in 269 games.

Marty Reasoner was traded to the Oilers, along with Jochen Hecht and Jan Horacek, from the St. Louis Blues in the summer of 2001, in exchange for Oilers captain Doug Weight and Michel Riesen. Coming off a strong season in 2002-03, where he recorded 11 goals and 20 assists for 31 points in 70 games, the centreman unfortunately missed the majority of the 2003-04 season with a knee injury. Reasoner played a total of 15 NHL seasons, six of which were spent with Edmonton, recording 266 points in 798 career NHL games.

POSTED ON Thursday, 03.31.2016 / 2:58 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

It’s been a tough second half of the season for Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.

The centreman was sidelined in January after a blocked shot injured his hand in a game against the Florida Panthers. Activated March 11, Nugent-Hopkins played six games before taking an unexpected hit in the head in a collision with Arizona Coyotes defenceman Connor Murphy on March 22.

“We just were kind of both going for the puck there,” said Nugent-Hopkins, who was forced to leave the game that night and diagnosed with a concussion that once again removed him from the lineup.

“[Murphy’s] a lot bigger of a guy than me so his shoulder just kind of — I haven’t even actually seen the replay — but from what I remember it got me right in the head. It wasn’t a dirty play or anything, it was just the way it worked out. Unfortunately I took the brunt of it.”

Though a return is unknown before the end of the season, Nugent-Hopkins said he hopes to return before the end and was happy getting in a good practice with the team today.

“I don’t know what the plan is exactly here but it was good to be back out there practicing with the guys,” he said. “Since I broke my hand I really haven’t had too many practices, it’s kind of go, go, go, so definitely nice to get a good one under my belt there.”

POSTED ON Thursday, 03.31.2016 / 2:24 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

Oilers defenceman Adam Pardy has continued to skate with the team for practices since sustaining a hand injury in early March.

“I think it was the [Philadelphia] game. But I don’t think it was too bad, I think it just progressively got worse,” said Pardy.

The 6-foot-4, 227-pound blueliner continued to play until he was no longer able to, his last game coming at home against the San Jose Sharks on March 8.

“It feels pretty good. Every day, every week it gets a little better,” he said, expressing his hopes to get some more playing time and return to the lineup on Saturday versus Calgary.

Claimed via waivers from the Winnipeg Jets on Feb. 29, the big-bodied blueliner was looking forward to a fresh start and was quick to make an impact with Edmonton before he was sidelined with his hand injury, playing six games and recording a pair of assists.

“It’s tough, you get a lot of minutes and you get on a little run — after the year in Winnipeg — that was important that I would be able to play minutes consistently,” said Pardy, taking the situation in stride. “So to have it shut down pretty quickly was not that much fun. But you’ve got to deal with the things that come your way.”

POSTED ON Thursday, 03.31.2016 / 1:51 PM MT
By Meg Tilley - / Inside the Oilers

It’s been over a month since Oilers defenceman Eric Gryba sustained a knee injury in a home game against the Anaheim Ducks.

“My foot got caught in the post and someone fell on me and that was it,” he said.

Since sustaining the injury, the 6-foot-4, 228-pound blueliner has been on the mend, working on getting his strength back, with hopes to return to the lineup before the season wraps up.

“I’m starting to feel better every day,” said Gryba. “It’s nice to get out and have some game-like situations. I’m not sure when I’m back. My goal is definitely to be back by the end of the season.”

On Saturday the Oilers will play host to the Calgary Flames for one last Battle of Alberta bout.

“If it’s feeling good enough and I’m confident then I’ll play Saturday,” said Gryba, who continued to say that although he’d like to play this weekend, what’s more important is ensuring his knee can withstand the return.

“Just making sure that I’m healthy and strong enough and I’m going to be able to go out there and help the team.”