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POSTED ON Wednesday, 08.10.2014 / 3:55 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Some lineup notes for the Oilers ahead of tomorrow night’s home opener include the naming of the starting goaltender. Ben Scrivens will get the first start in net tomorrow against Calgary, while Viktor Fasth will start against Vancouver on Saturday.

Defenceman Nikita Nikitin (ankle) is cleared to play tomorrow night. Also on the blueline, young defencemen Oscar Klefbom and Darnell Nurse will sit out the first game.

Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins said that barring illness, everyone would play.

Benoit Pouliot’s (hip flexor) prognosis looks better. Pouliot skated Wednesday morning after missing practice on Tuesday, and says he feels good.

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 08.10.2014 / 3:53 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Oilers winger Benoit Pouliot did not skate yesterday, but was on the ice today for practice. Head Coach Dallas Eakins said he was dealing with a hip flexor injury on Tuesday. Pouliot says it was feeling much better today.

“I’m feeling good,” Pouliot said. “It’s been a long week, I haven’t really skated that much as I’m trying to stay off of it and trying to heal whatever is going on. But I felt great this morning and hopefully tomorrow I will feel the same way.”

Pouliot says he does not know the exact origin of the injury, he’s just trying to make sure it doesn’t affect him much longer.

“Just a bad hip. I guess it happened when skating or maybe I got hit, I have no clue. One day it was really sore and I just tried to get it better so it doesn’t keep going for a few games or a few days.”

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 08.10.2014 / 1:28 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Forward combinations:

Hall-RNH-Eberle
Pouliot-Arcobello-Purcell
Perron-Draisaitl-Yakupov
Hendricks-Gordon-Joensuu
Acton & Gazdic

Defensive combinations:

Ference-Petry
Nikitin-Fayne
Klefbom-Schultz
Nurse-Hunt

Benoit Pouliot did not skate yesterday (hip flexor) but is on the ice today.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 07.10.2014 / 6:24 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The Oilers are hoping that when it comes to their goaltenders, they don’t have to choose just one starter. The team feels they have two quality NHL goalies in Ben Scrivens and Viktor Fasth.

“I hope they both play well enough that they both play 41 games,” Head Coach Dallas Eakins said. “I hope they both play so well that we just are able to split it. I hope that happens. Will it? I don’t know. Unless something happens and somebody falls off, which could happen, or somebody springs ahead then we will deal with it then. Knowing the two guys and how competitive they are and how supportive they are of each other, I think you’re going to see a real even match and I’m hopeful that they can both do the job.”

Scrivens played 21 games for the Oilers last season, posting a 3.01 GAA and .916 save percentage. Fasth played seven games, recording a 2.73 GAA and .914 save percentage.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 07.10.2014 / 4:26 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers
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POSTED ON Monday, 06.10.2014 / 5:23 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The newest announced tenant for the Edmonton Arena District will be Delta Hotels and Resorts.

“Today we are here to announce the development of a 50-plus storey tower that will feature a fantastic new 362-room, four star hotel and over 200 luxury condominiums,” said Daryl Katz, chairman of the Katz Group of Companies.

Click HERE to read more on RogersPlace.com

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POSTED ON Monday, 06.10.2014 / 12:16 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Keith Aulie, Anton Lander, Steve Pinizzotto and Tyler Pitlick have cleared waivers. They have been assigned to the Oklahoma City Barons.

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POSTED ON Sunday, 05.10.2014 / 7:17 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Selected third-overall in this year’s draft, Leon Draisaitl is set to begin his rookie season in Edmonton. Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins spoke on Sunday about what he expects from Draisaitl and what his observations were of the 18-year-old.

“I think his size, he’s not going to get pushed around on the ice, that’s for sure,” Eakins said. “The other thing was his ability to make NHL plays and seem calm to do it. I think he showed us all flashes of what he’s capable of. The challenge for a player coming out of junior is to be able to do it every night. That should be part of the process for him, but that should be his goal that he’s going to have a positive impact on the game every night. Is he going to have hiccups along the way? Absolutely. He’s a teenager. We’re ready to help him right away and, in the end, he was better than our other options right now.”

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POSTED ON Sunday, 05.10.2014 / 7:16 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Tyler Pitlick had some successful moments this pre-season. He had a game-changing shift at Winnipeg, he earned time with skilled players like Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and a big check by the winger knocked Bo Horvat out of the game against the Canucks and turned up the intensity.

But the Oilers placed Pitlick on waivers Sunday morning, with the purpose of assignment to Oklahoma City.

The decision is a risk, but one that MacTavish says the team was willing to make when they went through their personnel for the opening night roster. Pitlick was joined by Steve Pinizzotto, Keith Aulie and Anton Lander on waivers.

“I think we can debate on the effectiveness of Tyler Pitlick,” MacTavish said. “I think Tyler is at a position right now that we wish he would have been at a year or a year and a half ago. He’s turned himself into a professional. I think that it ended up with Tyler, as well as Pinizzotto, were two difficult decisions. It got down to a positional bias and I thought the 13th forward here would be best served by being a centreman and it was a risk I was willing to take.”

Will Acton is currently the 13th forward the Oilers elected to keep. The team stressed that the moves were not permanent, with the evaluation process ongoing.

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POSTED ON Sunday, 05.10.2014 / 7:15 PM
By Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

It was a bit of a surprise to see Martin Marincin’s name on the list of players assigned to Oklahoma City this morning. The 22-year-old played 44 games with the Oilers last season and, at times, was arguably the team’s best defenceman.

But Marincin struggled to hit his stride in camp and that, coupled with the club wanting to give Darnell Nurse and Brad Hunt their earned opportunity, led to the Oilers making a tough decision.

“I think, throughout training camp, there was a lot of competition for defencemen and I think you’re looking at different areas of strength and a bit of a different mix than having Marty,” General Manager Craig MacTavish said. “Marty is very good and played very well for us last year. Sending Marty down was one of those difficult decisions. It’s not a decision we can’t unwind in a very short period of time. I think, from my perspective, the decision was at what point do we give Brad Hunt the opportunity? At what point do we keep Darnell here and give him some games to see where his development is.

“I think we can all agree that Darnell is just going to continue to get better and better with this experience. Brad Hunt is a guy that we all like for his ability to provide offence. Does Marty Marincin do some things better than Brad Hunt? Absolutely. But Brad Hunt definitely does some things that can help us in an area of need. That’s difficult for Marty, but it is his third year of his entry level deal, it’s the last year that we have to try and test-drive a couple of other players before we have to make a clear decision, because quite clearly if we were going to have to put Marty on waivers we likely would have lost him.”

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INSIDE THE OILERS BLOG