AMERICAS has James Neal on same line as Connor... has James Neal on same line as Connor McDavid this year. Hmmm – Bukipress


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Neal had the worst Goals For Percentage of any Oilers forward who played with McDavid last year. In fact, it was the worst GF% for any Oilers forward who has ever played considerable even strength minutes with McDavid in 97’s NHL career.

I don’t see McDavid and Neal working out.

What do I see working out?

As I’ve often said, it’s no easy thing to play with McDavid, as he dominates the puck. He needs to dominate the puck. You want him to do so. The other players out there must therefore be willing to constantly give up the puck, but also skilled enough at the NHL level where when they do get the puck, they have the confidence and skill to make a play. Usually players that good want to keep and hold the puck more, hence the condondrum.

I see Dominik Kahun and Zack Kassian as the best bets to fit with McD, as Kahun is a great passer but not the kind to make end-to-end rushes, while Kassian has already demonstrated he’s a decent bet with McDavid. He will provide toughness and some skill while McDavid and Kahun work plays.

As for Neal, he’ll be in a fierce battle with players like Joakim Nygard, Alex Chiasson, Tyler Ennis, Josh Archibald and Jesse Puljujarvi for playing time. It’s likely, though, that one of Neal or Chiasson will be in the line-up each game, as they’re vital to the team’s power play.

At the Cult of Hockey

McCURDY: High time for Puljujarvi to come back to Edmonton

STAPLES: Who’s better? Broberg or Bouchard? 

McCURDY: Ranking the Oilers’ prospect d-men

LEAVINS: Oilers’ Return-To-Play plan more “if” than “when” — 9 Things


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