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Today in Hockey History: March 31

This is a very important date in hockey history as one of the greatest players to ever lace up a pair of skates was born on March 31. There were plenty of huge milestones that were reached on this date by some of the legends of the game, including a Hall of Famer’s final game. Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockey We usually wrap up this daily post with mentions of who is celebrating their birthday on a given day, but today we will start with the birthdays to honor one of the greatest hockey player...
Tags: Europe, Sport, Detroit Red Wings, Penguins, Hockey, NHL, Francis, Mike Rogers, Hull, Hall of Fame, Edmonton, New York Rangers, New York Islanders, Los Angeles Kings, Boston Bruins, Mark


Edmonton Oilers Announce Temporary Staff Reductions

EDMONTON (March 30) – Due to the far-reaching impacts of COVID-19, Oilers Entertainment Group (OEG) today implemented a temporary staff reduction of 139 employees, effective April 13, 2020, as well as a compensation rollback for all continuing staff working from home. These actions were made necessary by the pause of the NHL and AHL seasons, the cancellation of the WHL season, and the postponement of all Live Entertainment events at Rogers Place enacted to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus...
Tags: Sport, AHL, NHL, Edmonton, Edmonton Oilers, Rogers Place, WHL, COVID, Oilers Entertainment Group OEG


The 1979 NHL – WHA Merger

On March 30, 1979, the NHL announced that it would expand from 17 to 21 teams with the addition of four clubs from the World Hockey Association. The Edmonton Oilers, Hartford Whalers, Winnipeg Jets and Quebec Nordiques would begin play in Oct. 1979. The Oilers became the most successful of the four teams, winning the Stanley Cup five times from 1984-90. They are also the only one of the four teams that have not relocated. We have pulled this gem from The Hockey Writers archives. Written by form...
Tags: Sport, Arizona, Hockey, NHL, Houston, North America, North Carolina, Archives, Quebec, Denver, Edmonton, National Hockey League, Aba, Chicago Blackhawks, Boston Bruins, Phoenix


Weekly Prospect Report: Robertson, Broberg, Bedard, Fantilli & More

Welcome to the Weekly Prospect Report. Here, we’ll take a look at some key names over the past week that are a big part of the next wave of NHL stars. This column will dive into both NHL-affiliated and draft-eligible prospects, focusing mainly on those outside the NHL. Related: Weekly Prospect Report: Francis, Caufield, NHL Draft, Chromiak & More While the hockey world is on a COVID-19 shutdown, the 2020 NHL Draft will still happen – somehow. Throughout “The Pause,” I’ll keep my content ro...
Tags: Column, Sweden, Sport, Chicago, United States, Finland, Ncaa, Michigan, AHL, Hockey, NHL, Edmonton, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Maple Leafs, Toronto Maple Leafs


2020 NHL Draft: Top 10 Mock Scenarios 7.0

Mock 1.0Mock 2.0Mock 3.0Mock 4.0Mock 5.0Mock 6.0 In this series, I’ve been running the Tankathon simulator for the draft lottery on a daily basis and mocking the results for the top 10 leading up to the 2020 NHL draft — or until the actual lottery takes place to determine the official draft order. There are more than 30 different scenarios within the top-three picks, so this should provide plenty of entertainment for 30-plus days — for at least a month, if not longer, while awaiting th...
Tags: Time, Los Angeles, Sport, Chicago, Austria, Canada, New Jersey, Arizona, Kings, Detroit Red Wings, Quinn, Hockey, NHL, Montreal, Detroit, Quebec


Canada turning to makeshift hospitals to house patients as COVID-19 pandemic stretches capacity

Countries in Europe and states like New York have commandeered vast spaces normally reserved for conferences or sporting events to house the thousands of patients sickened by COVID-19.Provincial and municipal leaders in this country are now preparing to do the same, in the event the pandemic overwhelms our finite hospital capacity.The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced Friday it would build 10,000 hospital beds in New York City, a global hotspot for the virus, by converting hotel rooms and c...
Tags: Health, Europe, New York, Milan, News, New York City, Toronto, Spain, Canada, Italy, Manhattan, Andrew Cuomo, Edmonton, Ottawa, Ontario, Tam


Notes While In A Pause

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe, - All but a certainty now that the NHL will not complete its regular season, which will leave David Pastrnak two drops short of 50 goals and 5 points short of 100. As things stand, “Pasta” would finish tied with Alex Ovechkin for the league lead in goals (48), although Ovie collected his in 68 games and Pastrnak in 70. The only player to reach the 100-point plateau: Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl (43-67—110), who also topped the league in assists. ...
Tags: Sport, Penguins, NHL, Edmonton, Murray, Boston Globe, Bruins, Patrice Bergeron, Alex Ovechkin, David Pastrnak, Zdeno Chara, Fleury, Marc Andre Fleury, Matt Murray, Bergeron, Leon Draisaitl


McDavid Says He’d Rather Not Jump Right Into Playoffs

Connor McDavid took part in an NHL Conference call with captains from four Pacific Division teams on Friday and among the many number of topics discussed, he noted that a “fair season is a full season”, even if that’s not what works best for the Edmonton Oilers. The host went around the horn and asked what playoff format the players on the call would like. Bo Horvat started by saying he’d like to either have playoffs based on points percentage or play the rest of the season. Oliver Ekman-Lar...
Tags: Sport, Hockey, NHL, Calgary Flames, Calgary, Edmonton, Edmonton Oilers, Pacific Division, Oilers, Maple Leafs, Coyotes, Bo Horvat, Connor McDavid, Oliver Ekman Larsson, Gary Roberts, Bakersfield Condors


If The Pause Is Lifted, Go Right To The Playoffs Or Play Some Games First?

from the CP at CTV, Connor McDavid is at odds with Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin. McDavid's Oilers sat comfortably in a playoff spot when the NHL suspended its season earlier this month due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but unlike his contemporaries, Edmonton's captain thinks going right into the playoffs if the league gets the all-clear to resume would be a mistake. Speaking on a video conference call Friday, McDavid said “a full season's a fair season” when asked how h...
Tags: Sport, NHL, Edmonton, Oilers, Crosby, Sidney Crosby, Ovechkin, McDavid, CTV Connor McDavid, Alex Ovechkin McDavid


Flames’ Goaltending Has Real Depth

There are a lot more goalies in the system than you might be aware of. Learning more about these players and where they stand in terms of contracts, might help you decide where you stand on the goalie controversy. NHL Goalies David Rittich The 27-year-old, Czechoslovakian native has spent his career with the Calgary Flames. He debuted in 2016-17 after playing for the Czech Republic years prior. In his four year career with the Flames, he has played 115 games and started 106 of them...
Tags: Sport, Czech Republic, Stockton, Philadelphia, AHL, Hockey, NHL, Kansas City, Calgary, Edmonton, Joe, Wolf, Jake, Parsons, Terry Wilson, ECHL


Today in Hockey History: March 26

One of the greatest goaltenders to ever play the game set a record that will likely never be broken on this date. A hockey legend won his first and only scoring title and an American-born player scored 100 points for the first time in National Hockey League history. Tony O Sets the Bar High Tony Esposito was one of the best goaltenders of his generation. During his Hall of Fame career, which spanned from 1968 to 1984, he won 423 games to go along with his 2.93 goals-against average (GAA...
Tags: Los Angeles, Sport, Detroit Red Wings, Hockey, NHL, Edmonton, National Hockey League, Ross, Chicago Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings, Montreal Canadiens, Quebec City, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Blackhawks


‘Strange Brew’ and ‘SCTV’ Hosers Bob & Doug McKenzie Immortalized As Statues in Edmonton, Canada

Canada is known for giving us maple syrup and Ryan Reynolds, not to mention their undying love for hockey and inexplicably endless politeness. But when I think of Canada, there are two lovable hosers that come to mind, and that’s beer-chugging, hockey-loving brothers Bob and Doug McKenzie, played by Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis in both the Canadian sketch comedy series SCTV (or Second City Television) and the cult classic comedy feature film Strange Brew. Now the knuckleheads from the Great Whi...
Tags: Art, Comedy, New York, Movies, Los Angeles, Canada, Bob, Ryan Reynolds, Calgary, Edmonton, Cool Stuff, Thomas, Rick, McKenzie, Great White North, Edmonton Journal


2020 NHL Draft: Top 10 Mock Scenarios 4.0

Mock 1.0Mock 2.0Mock 3.0 In this series, I’ve been running the Tankathon simulator for the draft lottery on a daily basis and mocking the results for the top 10 leading up to the 2020 NHL draft — or until the actual lottery takes place to determine the official draft order. There are more than 30 different scenarios within the top-three picks, so this should provide plenty of entertainment for 30-plus days — for at least a month, if not longer, while awaiting the NHL’s plan going forwa...
Tags: Sweden, Los Angeles, Sport, Chicago, Austria, Canada, New Jersey, Arizona, Kings, San Jose, Mission, Detroit Red Wings, Quinn, Buffalo, Hockey, NHL


3 Devils Free Agent Targets

It seemed that New Jersey Devils fans were ecstatic prior to the 2019-20 campaign’s puck drop, after the organization’s memorable offseason transactions. Regardless of the NHL’s postponement on this season, the Devils were on the verge of missing the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the second consecutive season. More change is in order for Jersey’s team and fans should expect another busy offseason once free agency arrives. P.K. Subban and Jack Hughes, New Jersey Devils (Jess Starr/The Hockey...
Tags: Florida, Sport, New Jersey, Lightning, Hockey, NHL, Edmonton, Ross, Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers, Jersey, New Jersey Devils, Florida Panthers, Free Agents, Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Vladislav Namestnikov


James Neal: Oilers Most Likely Moved Before the 2020-21 Season

As we noted when we took at look at the future of Kris Russell, next season, the Edmonton Oilers will have some decisions to make. As NHL owners and GM’s meet in conference calls this week — much of the talk likely surrounding next season’s potential salary cap — the topic of compliance buyouts will undoubtedly come up. In a time where teams are looking to recoup losses, compliance buyouts will give teams a chance to alleviate some of the financial pressure from a variety of factors. From ...
Tags: Los Angeles, Sport, Gm, Hockey, NHL, Calgary, Edmonton, Edmonton Oilers, Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Oilers, Connor McDavid, Jonathan Quick, Neal, Kris Russell, Leon Draisaitl, Alex Chiasson


Chiarelli Suggests He’s a Victim of Early Oilers Success

Former Edmonton Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli sat down for an interview with Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun and talked about his new job in St. Louis, his time in Edmonton with the Oilers, what went wrong and what he’s learned. Chiarelli hasn’t spoken out his termination from the Oilers in over 14 months. With that in mind, I’m not sure what he said when he finally did speak will put Oilers fans at ease. Chiarelli On His Time in Edmonton When talking about his new gig com...
Tags: Boston, Sport, Chicago, Gm, Connor, Hockey, NHL, Montreal, St Louis, Edmonton, Hall, United Center, Edmonton Oilers, Bruins, Oilers, Carolina Hurricanes


Awards Time

Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press with a few awards.. Most disappointing defenseman Dennis Cholowski: Veterans Trevor Daley (seven assists, minus-22 in 43 games) and Mike Green (11 points, minus-32 in 48 games before being traded to Edmonton) disappointed, but they aren’t part of the team’s future and both struggled with health. It’s Cholowski (eight points, minus-26 in 36 games) who disappointed the most — he seemed like he was off to a good start, but while he’s a good skat...
Tags: Sport, Nielsen, Detroit, Edmonton, Grand Rapids, Steve Yzerman, Justin Abdelkader, Detroit Free Press, Trevor Daley, Frans Nielsen, Abdelkader, Valtteri Filppula, Mike Green, Filppula, Helene St James, Dennis Cholowski


Kris Russell: Oilers Most Likely Moved Before the 2020-21 Season

Next season, the Edmonton Oilers will have some decisions to make. Whether a much higher salary cap gets put in place by the NHL (unlikely) or the NHL allows for compliance buyouts (also potentially unlikely), there will be a few players on the Oilers roster that may not be with the team next season. With that in mind, Kris Russell becomes the first entry in our series of players the Oilers may move prior to the start of the 2020-21 NHL season — whenever that begins: Kris Russell vs. Ada...
Tags: Sport, Gm, Hockey, NHL, Montreal, Edmonton, Jones, Mitchell, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Russell, Adam Larsson, Larsson, Kris Russell, Dave Tippett, James Neal


1st Overall NHL Draft Picks: Regrets From the Last Decade

Second-guessing is always easy – especially when it comes to amateur drafts in professional sports. How could my team take this player over that one that year? Wasn’t it as obvious at the time, when they were fresh-faced teenagers, as it is now, years later? The answer, of course, is generally no – even when it comes to the NHL draft, which seems to deliver stars or at least very good players with its top picks more consistently than other major sports. Plenty of examples of drafter’s regret ...
Tags: Florida, Colorado, Boston, Russia, Toronto, Sport, Hockey, NHL, St Louis, Alberta, Hall of Fame, Edmonton, Hall, Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers, Chicago Blackhawks


Oilers News & Rumors: Smith, Russell, Fourth Jerseys, More

In today’s Edmonton Oilers news and rumors update, there is belief by one NHL insider that Mike Smith has done enough in Edmonton to earn a one-year extension, while another insider looks at contracts for veterans like Kris Russell, James Neal and Alex Chiasson and believes all could be gone next season. Finally, there are rumors the Oilers have a fourth jersey coming out next year, one that looks a lot like the old WHA jerseys did. Oilers to Give Smith One More Season? According to Spo...
Tags: Sport, Hockey, NHL, Smith, Edmonton, Jones, Mitchell, Mike Smith, Canadiens, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Athletic, Sportsnet, Russell, Neal, Kris Russell


Oilers’ Rags To Riches Story On the Blue Line

Defence has been one of the main talking points for the Edmonton Oilers for the past decade and for good reason. For much of their time toiling in mediocrity the team had trouble finding consistent defenders that were able to effectively defend for 20-plus minutes a night. We saw multiple attempts to rectify this, acquiring players like Ryan Whitney and Andrew Ference to bring a veteran feel to the backend, but both of these experiments, among many others, failed miserably. Ryan Whitney (...
Tags: Florida, Sport, AHL, Hockey, NHL, Bear, Edmonton, Hall, Jones, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh, New Jersey Devils, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Bouchard


Player Agents Keeping Busy

from Eric Francis of Sportsnet, The world’s new practice of social distancing can take on many forms, as Ritch Winter learned through a phone call earlier this week. “One player I reached on the phone was driving somewhere and I said, ‘where are you headed?’ and he said ‘I don’t know, but my wife needed me to get out of the house as much as I needed to get out of the house,’” said the Edmonton-based player agent. “I had another player ask me, ‘how can we have a season – we can’t e...
Tags: Los Angeles, Sport, NHL, Edmonton, Allan Walsh, Eric Francis, Ritch Winter


A Reset For Sam Gagner

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet, Sam Gagner grew up a hockey brat, the son of long-time NHLer Dave Gagner. Dad played in six different NHL cities before Sam was 10 years old. Gagner, his two sisters, and their mother Jo-Anne, packed up and followed Dave from Minnesota to Dallas, to Toronto, to Calgary, to Florida and finally to Vancouver, where Dad played out his 946-game, 714-point NHL career. It was a hockey life that produced an 844-game NHL career for Sam, and a four-year stint at ...
Tags: Florida, Minnesota, Toronto, Sport, Dave, Dallas, Vancouver, NHL, Sam, Calgary, Edmonton, Dad, Jessica, Rachel, Sam Gagner, Gagner


Should the Edmonton Oilers Retain Mike Smith?

These days, the conversation around the NHL is predominantly focused on what’s going to happen with the remainder of the regular season and if there will be a playoff season. If so, ‘What will it look like/’ and ‘Who will get in?’ are the questions everyone seems to be asking. For the Edmonton Oilers, regardless of the decision that gets made, they performed well. They’ll get in should the playoffs go on and much of that can be attributed to the performances of their goaltending tandem, Mikk...
Tags: Sport, Arizona, Gm, Dallas, Holland, Hockey, NHL, Smith, Edmonton, Mike Smith, Edmonton Oilers, Pacific Division, Oilers, Connor McDavid, Koskinen, Ken Holland


Stars’ Coaching Change: Laxdal, Gallant or Boudreau

The coronavirus has shut down the entire planet. To quote Tony Stark from The Avengers: Infinity Wars, “Earth is closed today.” Several people are debating if this NHL season will have a Stanley Cup Playoff or not. For the sake of this article, let’s assume a worst-case scenario and say there will be no more hockey this season. If you’re general manager Jim Nill looking back at the season, the biggest moment has to be the firing of Jim Montgomery. Whether the choice was the right decision or...
Tags: Minnesota, Washington, Sport, Stars, Dallas, Las Vegas, AHL, Hockey, NHL, Edmonton, Montgomery, Anaheim Ducks, Dallas Stars, Florida Panthers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Bruce Boudreau


We Are In Unknown Territory

from Helene Elliott of the LA Times, An eerie silence has fallen upon the NHL, the other major professional sports leagues in North America, and many other leagues around the world. When the NHL locked players out in 1994, in 2004 — sacrificing the season to get a salary cap — and again in 2012 it was easy for fans to be angry at one side or the other or both. They could criticize owners for being greedy or denounce players for being privileged, but they knew play would eventually res...
Tags: Colorado, Sport, Canada, United States, Vancouver, NHL, North America, Edmonton, Gary Bettman, Connor McDavid, LA Times, Leon Draisaitl, Helene Elliott, Cale Makar, Quinn Hughes, NHL Players Assn


NHL Rumors: Oilers, Rangers, Bruins, More

In today’s NHL rumor rundown, there is news the Edmonton Oilers might be looking to bring back a familiar face, buzz about what will happen with New York Rangers’ veteran goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and what Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara might be thinking about his future. Oilers Interested in Anton Slepyshev Bruce McCurdy of the Edmonton Journal took a look at rumors the Edmonton Oilers are heavily considering bringing back former Oiler Anton Slepyshev. McCurdy writes that “Plan...
Tags: New York, Sport, Gm, Rangers, DuPont, Hockey, NHL, North America, Edmonton, New York Rangers, Boston Bruins, Boston Globe, Edmonton Oilers, Bruins, Oilers, Sweeney


All Edmonton recreation centres to close indefinitely amid COVID-19 worries

All city-run recreation facilities across Edmonton will be closed to help protect the safety of the public and city employees during the COVID-19 pandemic, city officials said Saturday "The safety of the public and our employees is our main priority," interim city manager Adam Laughlin said in a release. "We don't yet know how long the closures will last. We will continue to be guided by the province's public health officials in taking actions to protect Edmontonians and visitors from ...
Tags: News, Alberta, Edmonton, Albert, St Albert, Alberta Health Services, Servus Credit Union Place, Edmonton Valley Zoo, John Janzen, COVID, Adam Laughlin, Edmonton Public Libraries, Strathcona County, Multicultural Centre Northgate Lions, City Arts Centre John Walter Museum City, Orange Hub and Prince of Wales Armoury Tenants


Flames won't pay event staff during COVID-19 suspension; Oilers offer assistance

The Calgary Flames will not be assisting their part-time, hourly, and event staff who will be underemployed during the suspension of the NHL season.The Flames sent an email to their hourly and event staff when the NHL paused the season Thursday as the league agreed to suspend play to try and limit the spread of the novel coronavirus."Alberta Employment Standards requires that employers provide 24 hours' notice for cancellation of scheduled shifts," said in the email which was obtained by Th...
Tags: News, Toronto, NHL, Major League Soccer, Calgary Flames, San Jose Sharks, Alberta, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto FC, Edmonton Oilers, Oilers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks, Marlies


Canadian curling continues to get hammered by novel coronavirus cancellations

Brad Gushue's curling team will not wear the Maple Leaf in Scotland and Canada has lost more world championships because of concerns over the spread of COVID-19.The World Curling Federation cancelled both the men's world championship scheduled for March 28 to April 5 in Glasgow, as well as the world mixed doubles and seniors championship April 18-25 in Kelowna, B.C., on Saturday.The women's world championship in Prince George, B.C., that was to open Saturday was called off earlier...
Tags: News, Scotland, Toronto, Canada, Glasgow, Las Vegas, North America, British Columbia, Edmonton, Manitoba, George, Geoff Walker, The Canadian Press, Kelowna, Kingston Ont, Portage