The Edmonton Oilers are getting back a familiar face in Connor McDavid as the team announced the star forward returns tonight against the Los Angeles Kings. That might be perfect timing with Edmonton barely holding onto third place by just one point, although they are also just one point away from second place. McDavid has missed six games with a quadriceps injury.
In fact, it looks like McDavid will be teamed with Sam Gagner and Alex Chiasson for Sunday’s game and is expected to join the power play. McDavid has 31 goals and 81 points through 55 games this year and should be able to add some extra offense for the Oilers for the team’s stretch run. The Oilers have gone 3-2-1 without their star player.
- It looks like the Arizona Coyotes will get a significant boost to their team as well. The Coyotes announced they have recalled goaltender Darcy Kuemper from the Tucson Roadrunners of the AHL from his conditioning stint. The netminder has been out with a lower-body injury since Dec. 19. He was close to a comeback several weeks ago, but suffered a setback. Kuemper played Saturday for Tucson, stopping 26 of 28 shots, and looks ready to join the Coyotes’ lineup. Kuemper was one of the top goaltenders in the league before his injury, posting a 15-8-2 record with a 2.17 GAA and a .929 save percentage.
- NHL.com’s Tim Campbell writes that Edmonton Oilers general manager Ken Holland isn’t interested in moving the team’s 2020 first-round pick just to add a piece to the team at the trade deadline. Edmonton is currently one point out of second place in the Pacific Division, but the GM is resistant to moving such a pick, considering the team is still building. “I’m hoping that we can compete for a playoff spot and more on an every-year basis,” said Holland. “You can’t be in the trading game every deadline, well maybe with secondary pieces, but you can’t trade first-round picks [every year].”
- The Athletic’s Mark Lazerus reports that while the Chicago Blackhawks have discussed trading goaltender Robin Lehner to the Carolina Hurricanes after the team lost both their goaltenders Saturday night. However, the scribe adds that at this moment, Carolina considers Chicago’s asking price for the goaltender far too high. However, both teams will continue to talk up to the trade deadline on Monday.
- In an interview with the Winnipeg Sun’s Scott Billeck, University of Minnesota-Duluth defenseman and Winnipeg Jets’ 2017 second-rounder Dylan Samberg, said that he is focused on winning a third-straight NCAA championship. However, he also said, after that, he has every intention of joining the Winnipeg Jets after his season is complete. The Jets were hoping the 6-foot-4, 215-pound blueliner would sign with the team last summer where he would have likely played a significant role with Winnipeg this year. However, Sampson would like to help his school be the first to win three straight national titles. “They took a chance on me, they wanted me for a reason and I respect that,” said Samberg. “I respect the organization, they have a lot of great people, and it’s not that far from home, which is nice. I want to eventually get to the Jets.”
- TSN’s Rick Dhaliwal reports that Vancouver Canucks are no longer in the running for New Jersey Devils forward Wayne Simmonds. There was a time that Vancouver was quite interesting in adding the veteran leader to their roster, but the team is evidently looking in a different direction.