As it turns out, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will only miss the first two games of the regular season. The 20-year-old star center is expected to be in the lineup Monday when his Edmonton Oilers host the New Jersey Devils.
Nugent-Hopkins had shoulder surgery on April 23 and didn’t play during the preseason. (What he did do, though, was sign a $42 million contract extension.)
Even with the return of Nugent-Hopkins, head coach Dallas Eakins reportedly wouldn’t rule out Taylor Hall remaining at center. The Oilers are still without their other true top-six center, Sam Gagner (broken jaw), for a while.
Edmonton plays Saturday in Vancouver before returning home for the Devils game.