Nail Yakupov wasn’t happy to find out that the Edmonton Oilers wouldn’t use him in Saturday’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, so imagine how he feels now.
Oilers coach Dallas Eakins has decided to scratch the promising 20-year-old forward again for Monday’s contest against the Washington Capitals. The Oilers suffered a 6-5 overtime loss without him on Saturday.
Yakupov didn’t record a point in his first four games this season, but Eakins’ primary concern is the 2012 first overall pick’s tendency to try and do too much by himself.
“You have to use your linemates, so it was more of a reset button for him,” Eakins said. “He can come in fresh with a new perspective.”
It’s still just October and Yakupov, as talented as he is, still has a lot of growing to do. It’s not unheard of for even first overall picks to spend some time on the sidelines as the team works on their development.
It’s just a matter of time before he’ll be allowed to re-enter the lineup.
"My goal is to play in the NHL. I have not had any conversations (with Neftekhimik). I love it here" – Nail Yakupov #Oilers
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger