New Faces of Fear | Oilersnetwork.com - Edmonton Oilers News and Rumours

New Faces of Fear


Will the Edmonton Oilers roster on opening day strike fear into the hearts and minds of their opponents? Will the opposition look across the ice and see a team that they'd rather not be playing? A team that will no longer guarantee a two-point match-up for the Oilers opponents?

The way the roster is shaped now, I would say no - not even with Connor McDavid in the top-six.


But, it doesn't mean the Oilers can't take a significant step forward and make some adjustments this off-season to improve the likelihood they are a team you don't want to play.

The Oilers offensive talent is obvious. With the addition of Connor McDavid, Edmonton's potential to put up big points could be a scary thought for some teams who aren't built well on the blueline. But can the Edmonton Oilers keep goals out of their own net? That is the million dollar question.

The addition of a more seasoned Darnell Nurse, whether this year or next, will help. However Nurse can't be relied upon to have a feature role this upcoming season, nor shut down the opponents top forwards. He's simply too inexperienced. Oscar Klefbom has played well in limited NHL minutes, but is he ready to be a top-pairing player? The Oilers certainly hope so, but the chance of regression always exists in what is really going to be Klefbom's sophmore season.

That leaves Mark Fayne - a traditional shut-down defenseman. Nikitin, Ference, Marincin and Schultz all come with serious question marks in terms of playing strong defence or just father-time catching up to them.

Until Edmonton adds a veteran NHL defenceman in the agre range of 28-32,with tons of experience, the Oilers will get scored upon, and often. They better be prepared to win 6-5 in an NHL not known any more for high-scoring games.

This of course, says nothing about the Oilers goaltending situation, which is less than pretty. 

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