It is the end of August which means summer is all but officially over. With that comes the renewed hype that the Edmonton Oilers season is right around the corner with the annual rookie camp now less than a week away. Shortly after that main camp will break followed by a handful of exhibition games before opening night is upon us, just 31 days away. Yes folks, hockey is ready to occupy our lives again and aside from the groans of the wives and non-hockey partners, the rest of us can’t wait.
As the Oilers’ management prepare for the rookie camp, an opportunity to scout their future stars, expectations for this club will soon begin to mold into shape. Since the Oilers season ended last spring that included another empty feeling of no playoff hockey, radical changes have given this club a face lift. And one for the better mind you.
Gone is Steve Tambellini, Ralph Krueger and long time staple like Shawn Horcoff. Fresh faces in David Perron, Andrew Ference and Boyd Gordon will occupy vacant stalls in the Oilers dressing room, surrounded by the core of Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Nail Yakupov and Justin Schultz.
The moves have restored faith in Oilers management that they are righting this ship and now sailing towards calmer waters. Some feel they have done enough with the roster and that this team will be competitive for the start of the season. Others feel that more deals are needed between training camp and the start of the regular season, while some say the trade deadline will provide the opportunity for MacTavish to polish up his roster for the playoff charge.
So as we get set to say goodbye to August and welcome in September with open arms, full of excitement, where do your expectations lie with this current group of Oilers. Are they sky high with a playoff birth being the only acceptable outcome? Or is a competitive team that hangs around the playoff push right until the final month something that you feel this team will accomplish; close but no cigar type mentality?
Take part in our poll and let’s see where the Oilers’ fans have set their expectations with training camp on the horizon.