The Edmonton Oilers have been on fire lately, with several players making significant contributions to their team’s success. In this edition of Oilers’ Quick Hits, I’ll take a closer look at three players whose recent performances are positively impacting the Oilers’ success.
First, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has been quietly having a fantastic season and is on track to hit the 100-point mark.
Second, Mattias Ekholm, who was acquired by the Oilers in a trade earlier this season, has also been a valuable addition. He’s providing solid play on both ends of the ice.
And of course, there’s Connor McDavid. What’s left to say about his amazing season? He continues to dominate the NHL with his incredible skills and consistency.
Quick Hit One: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins Is Having a Great Season
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (RHN) is having an impressive season. In fact, he’s nearly 30 points up on his previous high season of 69 points. He’s on track to achieve the 100-point mark.
His recent performance of five goals and 14 assists (for 19 points) over his last 11 games is worth taking note of. It shows his ability to contribute offensively. He’s been a solid player for the Oilers since he was drafted first overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft; but. he’s pouring it on this season.
Part of his success is that he’s continuing to work well with his teammate Connor McDavid. McDavid is having a career season and that impacts everyone. Nugent-Hopkins’ overall scoring statistics are now up to 35 goals and 62 assists (for 97 points) in only 77 games. He’s playing a key role in the Oilers’ success this season.
Quick Hit Two: Ekholm Is a Perfect Fit in Edmonton
On Saturday, Mattias Ekholm registered two assists and a plus-3 rating. Although that broke a five-game point slump, it isn’t as if Ekholm hasn’t been playing positive hockey since he came to the Oilers. He’s been nothing less than a perfect fit with this team.
Ekholm is exactly what the team needed. He makes that much of a difference. He can contribute both offensively and defensively, and he’s a shot-blocker extraordinaire. Currently, he has registered 29 points and a plus-18 rating through 73 games split between Edmonton and Nashville.
No matter where he goes, Ekholm’s been a valuable player. He could make the difference in the Oilers’ postseason success.
Quick Hit Three: What’s Left to Say About Connor McDavid?
Connor McDavid’s performance all season has been impressive. Recently, he extended his point streak to 11 games with a goal and a power-play assist. McDavid’s eight goals and 14 assists (that’s 22 points, or two points each game) over the 11-game span highlights his offensive dominance and his ability to make plays for his teammates.
It’s incredible that he’s recorded at least two points in 44 of 77 games this season. He’s consistently been on fire throughout the season. Currently, McDavid has scored 62 goals and is up to 146 points.
There should be no other considerations for end-of-the-season awards. McDavid should win the Hart Trophy going away. He’s clearly the NHL’s most valuable player. His positive play has made the Edmonton Oilers a contender for the Pacific Division title.
Now, can he and his teammates pull the Oilers through the long Stanley Cup journey?
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