The Edmonton Oilers have been absolutely horrific for the majority of the past decade. In fact, the last time Edmonton made a playoffs run was in 2006 when they lost in the Stanley Cup Finals against the Carolina Hurricanes. Ironically, both the Canes and the Oilers are among the worst teams in the league. However, this year, there are plenty of things for Oilers fans to be optimistic about.
The Oilers had the first overall pick for four times in the past six years. This year, they selected Connor McDavid, a generational player who had 120 points in his last year of junior hockey with the Erie Otters. McDavid is only 18 years old and he has been compared to superstars like Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin.
Despite the amount of pressure from the media and the fans, McDavid has performed very well so far this year. He scored five goals and has 12 points in 11 games so far this season, and those numbers are amazing for an NHL rookie. McDavid reinvigorated the slacking Oilers team and inspired both his teammates and the fans to show pride and spirit for the team.
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Not only has McDavid made an impact, but other former number one draft picks have matured and become much stronger players as well. Taylor Hall has been spectacular this year as well with four goals and six assists in eleven games while Nail Yakupov has also had flashes of brilliance.
Yakupov currently has two goals and eight assists in eleven games. Both of these players are dominating the Edmonton offence alongside McDavid.Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, the 2011 first round pick has also been playing very well. He has three goals and four assists in 11 games.
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In addition, many other youngsters asides from the former first round overall picks are making a huge impact in the young Edmonton team. Leon Draisaitl has been called up and is currently playing in Edmonton's first line in place of the injured Jordan Eberle. Draisaitl has made an instant impact to the team by scoring two goals during his first game this season.
Another notable call up for the Oilers is Darnell Nurse, a defenseman who has one goal and one assist in two games. He has also made a huge impact defensively and has a very healthy plus two rating.
Despite the fact that the Oilers are fifth in the Pacific Division and currently hold a 4-7 record, their fans and the team have plenty to be optimistic about. Firstly, they're not the last place team in their division! In fact, they have more points than the extremely talented Anaheim Ducks.
Secondly, the Oilers have been able to get four wins without their elite forward Jordan Eberle. Jordan Eberle is known for being an elite playmaker and a reliable goalscorer. He often plays alongside Taylor Hall in the first line. With Eberle sidelined until mid-November, the Oiler's record is actually very impressive.
When Eberle comes back, the Oilers will have a very young and very dangerous team, with scoring talents in every corner of their top three lines. The Oilers might not make the playoffs, but they will definitely be an amazing team in the near future.