The Edmonton Oilers got good news and bad news on Tuesday. The good news was that Tyler Ennis had cleared waivers, thus allowing the team to move him back and forth from the Taxi Squad without issue. The bad news is, the reason Ennis was likely waived in the first place — giving Evan Bouchard and opportunity to slot in — Bouchard will not play on Tuesday night.
The reason the young, offensively-gifted defenseman isn’t going to be inserted into the lineup (despite the Oilers clearing some room to add him) is because he’s dealing with a back issue. Head coach Dave Tippett revealed that news on Tuesday and said Bouchard won’t play the second contest of two this week against the Winnipeg Jets.
The Oilers did make other changes, pulling Slater Koekkoek out of the lineup and putting Caleb Jones back in, while Devin Shore will come out and Jujhar Khaira will play.
The roster will look like the following for tonight’s contest:
RNH – McDavid – Puljujarvi
Kahun – Draisaitl – Yamamoto
Neal – Turris – Kassian
Archibald – Khaira – P. Russell
Nurse – Bear
K. Russell – Barrie
Jones – Larsson
Hopefully Bouchard’s Issue Isn’t Serious
There were jokes on social media that this is what happens when you keep a player in the press box too long, but in all seriousness, the hope is that whatever is bugging Bouchard is not all that serious. It wouldn’t be a good thing if this turned out to be more than little soreness. “Bouch has a little bit of a back issue. He’s not available to us right now.” Tippett said.
We have to assume whatever happened took place in practice but we’re not clear on that yet. We’ll update this story as more information is learned. The silver lining here is that Tippet’s comments seem to suggest that if Bouchard wasn’t dealing with the injury, he would have played.
That’s good news for Oilers fans who have been actively waiting for the rookie to get his first looks this season and help the Oilers make some better plays coming out of their own zone.
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