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Oilers Update: Koekkoek Injury, Bear Trade Talk, McDavid Highlights

Ethan Bear Connor McDavid Oilers

The Edmonton Oilers are coming off a huge 7-1 win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday night but the news isn’t all good. Defenseman Slater Koekkoek provided an update on his injury from the first period, while talk of an Ethan Bear return doesn’t sound terribly promising. There’s trade discussion when it comes to the Oilers blue line and we offer some Connor McDavid highlights from his five-point night.

Related: Will the Oilers’ Tyson Barrie Keep Ethan Bear Off the Top-Pairing?

McDavid Wows With Five Points

One night after being held off the scoresheet and with Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner creeping up the NHL’s scoring leaderboard, McDavid went off for five points against the Flames. He had three goals and two assists and essentially took over the contest.

In one instance, he scored a ridiculous no-looker, taking the puck from his feet to his skate at the offensive blue line, then never once looking at the puck or the goaltender before scoring on a wrist shot that had everyone fooled.

Slater Koekkoek Suffers Broken Collarbone

Sam Bennett’s hit on Koekkoek just seconds into the game on Saturday wasn’t pretty. The results aren’t either. Koekkoek posted on his Instagram account that he broke his collarbone.

Essentially, that’s going to do it for the rest of his regular season. It’s likely a 10-12 week recovery process and while he could return towards the end of the season, this is a loss for the Oilers who are already down Ethan Bear and William Lagesson.

Trading a Defenseman?

It seems insane to think that the Oilers would consider moving Bear or another defenseman with the news of recent injuries, but apparently, there’s some talk that Bear is expendable with the depth the Oilers have and the progression of a player like Evan Bouchard.

Bear isn’t skating with the team so it’s uncertain as to when he might return, but Allan Mitchell of The Athletic recently looked at the Darnell Nurse and Bear pairing vs. the Nurse and Tyson Barrie pairing. He writes:

Barrie is signed for one season and is going to want a raise for next year, Bear is on a terrific value deal ($2 million this year and next) but a substantial increase is in his future.

It may come down to dollars, but Holland signed Barrie and may want to retain him long-term if he can afford him.

Jonathan Willis of The Athletic also commented on the speculation and said trading Bear right now would be a huge mistake as he’s one of the few players the Oilers have under contract at a very good rate.

Next: Maple Leafs’ William Nylander Benched in 5-3 Win Over Canadiens



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