“I just want to help my team win every game,” the 20-year-old said today, per the club’s Twitter account. “I love this city and I want to play for this team.”
As mentioned, that flies somewhat in the face of remarks his agent, Igor Larionov, made in an interview with ESPN.
“We’re willing to make a move,” Larionov said. “Any team. That happens and that’s part of life.”
Then again, Yakupov wasn’t entirely acquiescent in his comments today. He wants to play more than the 10 or 11 minutes he’s been logging in recent games, and he thinks he deserves to.
The first overall pick in the 2012 draft, Yakupov has been the subject of intense trade speculation as both he and the Oilers have struggled out of the gate. Suffice to say, his agent’s comments only added to that speculation.
Our take? Even if Larionov was only being realistic — after all, trades do happen in pro sports — he didn’t exactly make Yakupov sound committed to the Oilers. And for a kid whose “team game” has been called “really, really poor,” well, parallels are bound to be drawn.
Edmonton hosts Dallas tomorrow.
"I like the kid. He's a passionate kid who works hard and still has a lot to learn about the game." – Coach Eakins on Yakupov
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