Ryan Nugent-Hopkins

Oilers’ Nugent-Hopkins undergoes successful shoulder surgery

On Wednesday, Edmonton announced that forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins successfully underwent shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum.

“It’s something that’s been nagging at me for a couple years,” Nugent-Hopkins explained. “It got a little bit worse and it’s something that has to be taken care of eventually.

“We all decided it was time.”

As The Nuge alluded to, shoulder problems have plagued him through his first two seasons at the NHL level. He missed 20 games during his rookie campaign to the same issue and was forced to undergo lengthy rehab before joining Team Canada at the 2012 World Championships.

The Oilers decided to shut down Nugent-Hopkins over the weekend after they’d been eliminated from playoff contention. It was an abrupt end to a tough year for the 20-year-old, who suffered through a sophomore slump that saw him score just four goals (24 points all told) in 40 games.

Last season, he scored 52 points in 62 games and was one of the finalists for the Calder Trophy.

Nugent-Hopkins told reporters that he would be “good to go” for the start of next season.

Measure of revenge? Red Wings bottle Lightning

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In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.

For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.

Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.

Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.

They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.

Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.

Hands of gold: Connor McDavid scores his first NHL goal


Taking three games to score your first NHL goal isn’t a big deal, unless you’re someone like Connor McDavid.

The mega-hyped wunderkind must feel relieved to finally find the net, as he tied tonight’s Edmonton Oilers – Dallas Stars skirmish with a 2-2 deflection goal, which you can watch above this post’s headline.

To no surprise, there were plenty of reactions, including Pierre LeBrun’s tweet (which inspired part of this headline).

Of course, there were the inevitable Wayne Gretzky comparisons:

Interesting thing you might not consider: Stars fans will have to stomach this one even more frequently than that time Patrik Stefan biffed that empty-netter (also against the Oilers):

McDavid may have also delivered his first questionable check, too: