Ryan O’Reilly no longer has a clean penalty record this season.
On Saturday night during the Colorado Avalanche’s 3-2 victory against the San Jose Sharks, O’Reilly picked up his first minor penalty of the season. After playing in 71 consecutive penalty-free games, he was sent off on a minor penalty for playing with a broken stick.
It’s true. Rule 10.3 of the NHL Rulebook says you cannot use a broken stick to play with and doing so can lead to a two-minute minor penalty. That’s just what happened to O’Reilly at 8:49 of the third period. Fortunately for him, his Avs teammates killed the penalty and went on to beat the Sharks.
As for his Lady Byng Trophy campaign, it likely rages on unless this first penalty was the gateway drug to becoming a goon.
The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.
The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.
The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.
But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.
“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”
Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.
A preseason push by a number of Vancouver Canucks youngsters has left forward Linden Vey and defenseman Frank Corrado on waivers today.
The more surprising name of the two is Corrado, the 22-year-old who entered the season with an excellent chance of making the opening-day roster. However, it seems that rookie d-man Ben Hutton, 22, has been given the nod after finishing an eye-opening preseason with one goal and four assists in seven games. (This despite Hutton being waiver exempt. So it’s a risk for the Canucks, to be sure.)
It was the play of 19-year-old rookie Jared McCann that led, in part, to the waiving of Vey. (For more on that, click here.) Veteran Adam Cracknell remains with the team as well, to some surprise.
Rookie winger Jake Virtanen is also expected to be on Vancouver’s opening-day roster, though that’s no big shock.
Defenseman Alex Biega is also on waivers, as expected.