It’s a good news, bad news type of day for Oilers fans. On the upside, Ales Hemsky will be back in the lineup tonight against Montreal. According to Mark Spector of Sportsnet, he’ll be on a line with Shawn Horcoff and Ryan Smyth. Getting the high-scoring forward back should be a boost to the already very surprising Oilers.
On the downside, however, Magnus Paajarvi will be the guy sitting out tonight’s game to make room for Hemsky. Paajarvi is one of last season’s three big rookies to hit the scene in Edmonton and, you guessed it, the sophomore slump has struck.
Through 13 games this season, Paajarvi has but one assist and no goals while seeing his ice time drop by nearly two minutes. The team is winning and Paajarvi isn’t producing. That’s just how it goes these days and now the Oilers are looking like a team with depth at forward. With Linus Omark sent packing to the AHL and now Paajarvi in the press box tonight, maybe GM Steve Tambellini got something right here.
Of course, if Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall start slumping, then the Oilers are in deep trouble.