Oilers send top d-man prospect Nurse to AHL

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On Wednesday, the Oilers sent Darnell Nurse — the blueliner taken seventh overall in ’13 — to their AHL affiliate in Bakersfield.

The move won’t come as a huge surprise to anyone that followed training camp.

New head coach Todd McLellan, taking a page from his days in San Jose, wasted little time splitting Oilers camp into “NHL” and “AHL” groups, with Nurse occupying the latter.

Though he did eventually get looks with the NHL group, the 20-year-old always seemed destined to start the year in the American League.

And it’s probably the smart decision.

Nurse doesn’t have a ton of professional hockey experience. He’s played two games at the NHL level, four at the AHL level, and another seven Calder Cup playoff games (in which, it has to be mentioned, he scored five points.)

What’s more, Edmonton made some defensive reinforcements this summer, picking up the likes of Andrej Sekera, Eric Gryba and former Isles first-rounder Griffin Reinhart, who now looks likely to crack the opening-night roster.