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Dave Tippett Says Oilers Won’t Hide Tyson Barrie This Season

One of the burning questions for the Edmonton Oilers this season will be how much the team uses Tyson Barrie this season.

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As the Edmonton Oilers head into the 2020-21 season, it’s fair to say there are some burning questions. Whether it’s regarding the penalty kill, Kyle Turris as a two-way forward, improving five-on-five scoring or the goaltending, it will be interesting to see how the season unfolds.

Related: Oilers Likely to Trade a Winger Before the 2020-21 Season?

One area Oilers fans will be watching intently is how newly-acquired Tyson Barrie meshes with this team. Head coach Dave Tippett is wondering the same thing, but is excited about the prospect of what he can bring to the Oilers roster.

Tippett was asked a series of questions about the upcoming season by Post Media and he took some time to talk about Barrie coming in and, in many ways, doing more than replacing Oscar Klefbom.

Does Barrie Change the Oilers Power Play?

Tippett admitted that the Oilers power play will have a bit of a different look and feel this season with Barrie running point. Klefbom is out and Barrie is in, but the fact that Klefbom was a left-shot d-man and Barrie is a righty, isn’t the only difference between the two.

Tippett said, “Barrie is a really creative. Looking forward to see how he meshes with the other guys.” He noted that he loves to shoot and hinted that the Oilers are going to encourage he do so on a regular basis. That will mean the power play will be not just run off the half-wall by guys like McDavid and Draisaitl, but rebounds and a net-front presence will be huge.

Whether that equates to the Oilers repeating their success as the best power play in the NHL is unclear. But, it should still be effective.

What About In Other Areas?

The knock on Barrie — whether it’s warranted or not — is that he’s one dimensional. Does that concern Tippett as the Oilers blue line success will have to come by committee? It certainly doesn’t sound like Tippett will shy away from using Barrie in situations outside of the man advantage.

While he’s a top blueliner offensively, it’s too much to suggest Barrie is an elite NHL defenseman because of his lower numbers in five-on-five play. That’s not going to stop the Oilers from using him there.

Tippett says the Oilers won’t be hiding anyone and that everyone will be needed in a condensed season. As for whether or not he gets the bulk of the five-on-five time with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, all Tippett would say was, “We’ll see.”

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