The Edmonton Oilers announced the roster for their annual rookie camp that will take place from September 5-8 in Penticton, British Columbia.
According to the official press release courtesy of the team’s website, it’s a pair of blue liners that highlight the roster. Both Oscar Klefbom and Darnell Nurse highlight the list of who will be trying to catch the eye of the Oilers scouts and management who will sit high in the stands, evaluating their crop of young talent.
Nurse of course was the clubs first overall selection in this year’s NHL Entry Draft held at the end of June. A big defenseman, Nurse has the promise to develop into that blue liner that has a presence when he’s on the ice, both physically and offensively.
It would be a long shot for Nurse to make the big club in his first year pro, meaning another season in either junior or the AHL is likely where Nurse will wind up after the Oilers main camp. It’s not to say that he won’t turn some heads up the upcoming rookie camp in early September.
Klefbom on the other hand is expected to battle for an everyday roster spot with the Oilers this upcoming season. Drafted 19th overall by the Oilers in the 2011 Entry Draft, Klefbom has developed into the defenseman the Oilers hoped he would be and that’s a defensive minded, stay at home blue liner.
After spending the last few years playing in Sweden, Klefbom will look to make the adjustment to the North American’ game, something that could hurt his chances of sticking with the big club out of camp.
The other stat that could hurt Klefbom’s chances are the fact that the Oilers are deep in NHL ready defenseman after signing Denis Grebeshkov earlier this summer.
Justin and Nick Schultz along with Ladislav Smid, Jeff Petry, Corey Potter, Andrew Ference and Anton Belov are said to be the top seven defenseman heading to camp with Philip Larsen also a legitimate option. Meaning Klefbom will have to beat out someone like Petry to secure his spot.
But first things first and that will be the Oilers rookie camp where both Klefbom and Nurse will not only turn some heads, but impress with their skills as well.