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Oilers’ Ryan McLeod Has Extended Opportunity With Khaira Injury

Ryan McLeod could get a lengthy look for the Edmonton Oilers with the injury sustained by center Jujhar Khaira.

Ryan McLeod Edmonton Oilers
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Nobody ever wants to see the negative results a hit like the one Jujhar Khaira took on Monday versus the Montreal Canadiens. A clean body check that went wrong for the Oilers forward has left Khaira on the outside looking in with no clear timetable for a return. The latest is that he’s in good spirits but Head coach Dave Tippett said he will miss some time.

Khaira was having a solid season, but this is now the second time he’s been knocked out of a game after what appears to be a concussion scare. When he lost a scrap with Brett Ritchie, Khaira wasn’t out long, returning a couple of nights later. This time around, it might serve the Oilers well to be more cautious. Monday’s hit looked bad from the perspective that Khaira seemed to not know where he was. A heavy run-in with Alexander Romanov, Khaira went to the Oilers’ dressing room and didn’t return.

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While he’s said to be doing alright, one has to wonder if the Oilers will take a extra time in bringing him back. Perhaps they have the luxury of doing so with their recent call-up from the AHL, Ryan McLeod.

Bob Stauffer spoke during the intermission of Monday’s game and specifically about McLeod and what he brings to the Oilers organization. There is genuine excitement for the season he’s had in the AHL and how he might be able ot translate that over to success at the NHL level. There are no guarantees, but the Oilers feel good that he can contribute.

Tippett Likes McLeod’s Game

“He’s an intriguing player because of his size, speed & ability to create offence. We want to get him in some games down the stretch,’ said coach Tippett. The coach wants McLeod to have one full practice before making his NHL debut, but expect him to see action as early as next Wednesday vs Winnipeg or next Thursday vs Calgary.

This will be not long after newly-acquired defenseman Dmitry Kulikov will join the Oilers roster. Edmonton should get a nice boost of energy from the two arrivals.

McLeod is a second-round draft pick in the 2018 draft, He has been on fire with the AHL’s Bakersfield Condors, posting 28 points in 28 games. He will wear number 71 for Edmonton. His old number (70) will be worn by Dmitry Kulikov.

Next: Carey Price in Concussion Protocol After Mild Hit vs. Oilers

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