Confusion surrounding Adam Henrique's availability for Game 6

While opinion is mixed on if Adam Henrique will play on Saturday night, what is undeniable is how important he is to the Edmonton Oilers and their chances.
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game Two
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game Two / Derek Cain/GettyImages

Just like that, it's now or never for the 2023-24 edition of the Edmonton Oilers. With the season on the line will they step up, or once more have their dreams of Stanley Cup glory shattered into a million pieces?

In some respects, game one versus the Vancouver Canucks serves as an epitome of how this series has gone thus far for the Oilers. It was one of missed opportunity -- blowing a seemingly insurmountable three-goal lead -- while also highlighting how they have been second-best for the majority of the time against their Pacific Division rivals.

The warning signs were there, by virtue of the Canucks sweeping the regular season series 4-0-0. And yet the experts still predicted -- including the oddsmakers -- that the Oilers would find a way to win this second round all-Canadian playoff series.

This is not meant to serve as an obituary, with the Oilers still in with a fighting chance of coming back to take the series. At the same time however, now is where we find out what this particular team is made of.

What is the injury status of Henrique?

What would undoubtedly help, would be if Adam Henrique is available for game six. He has been extremely important to the Oilers ever since he arrived in a trade from the Anaheim Ducks, via the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The combination of Henrique's experience, talent and high hockey IQ helped the Oilers down the regular season stretch. He also displayed his toughness and willingness to get stuck in during the first round of the playoffs versus the Los Angeles Kings, highlighted by leading the team with 22 hits. (Zach Hyman was second, with 19.)

Unfortunately, Henrique suffered an injury in the series-clinching 4-3 win over the Kings, resulting in him only being able to suit up once so far versus the Canucks, in game two. And it was clearly he was still struggling, as he failed to register a single hit and was limited to 11:38 of ice time.

Now, as the Oilers prepare for a game they can't lose on Saturday night, they need the 34-year-old more than ever. Which leads to the obvious question of if he will be available for game six at Rogers Place?

Who is correct - Gregor or Stauffer?

Well, it depends on who you ask, with there being some mixed reports regarding Henrique. On the one hand, Jason Gregor of Sports 1440 took to social media on Friday, to write that the forward will not be available for game six.

However, before Oilers fans become too despondent, there is some hope, at least according to Bob Stauffer of Oilers Now. As noted by the Edmonton Journal's David Staples, Stauffer has indicated that Henrique will be a game time decision.

Now there is no denying Gregor has a good reputation within the hockey scene, but even this pales in comparison to Stauffer's standing when it comes to all things Oilers. Without doubt, anyone connected to the team hopes that the 630 CHED radio announcer is closer to the truth.

Not that this is a resoundingly better alternative mind. The fact Henrique is a game time decision alludes to how much he is still struggling with his injury; further, even if he does play, there is a concern he could have a minimal impact given to that offered during game two's 4-3 overtime win versus the Canucks.

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Ultimately though, to have even a chance that Henrique will play, is still better than nothing. Now, more than ever, Oilers fans have to hope that Stauffer's report is closer to the truth than Gregor's.

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