BLOG: Oilers separate forwards and defence for abilities day

EDMONTON, AB – The Oilers break up up observe on Tuesday as they give the impression of being to win their seventh straight sport tomorrow once they tackle the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The forwards and goaltenders went to work on the principle ice at Rogers Place whereas the defence occupied the Downtown Neighborhood Enviornment. Head Coach Jay Woodcroft has experimented with this kind of observe up to now, however with the Oilers lighter schedule this week, it gave the workers the flexibility to not solely give attention to the workforce sport, however the person sport as nicely.

“I believe a day like right this moment, which we might name nearly ‘position-specific’, lets you work at completely different components of your particular person sport relative to your place,” Woodcroft stated. “We began doing this within the American Hockey League. We’d have growth weeks. The schedule is a bit of bit completely different down there, however the best way we might phrase it to a few of the younger fellas down there was that it was their flip to put money into their very own private company, work at their very own sport. 

“It wasn’t about workforce construction or workforce ways, it was about feeling good with completely different areas of their very own private sport,” he added.

Video: RAW | Jay Woodcroft 01.24.23

The Oilers construction has been wonderful for nearly all of the month of January. Edmonton has allowed three or fewer targets in each sport they’ve deployed 11 forwards and 7 defencemen this month and eight-of-10 video games general. The dedication and buy-in to the workforce sport opens up practices like Tuesday to play a bit of extra with the puck.  

“I believe it is good every now and then. You are touching the puck so much, feeling good with it, capturing it so much and making little performs whereas a full-team observe is numerous techniques and stuff, and you are not touching the puck as a lot,” Ryan Nugent-Hopkins stated in regards to the session. “It is a bit of extra like what you do in summer season the place you are working in your abilities and doing all your particular person stuff. I believe as gamers, we need to try this every now and then and be ok with our sport.”

After a really busy month of December the place the Oilers suited up for 15 video games in 31 after which 10 video games within the first 21 days of January, the workforce will solely play two video games between Jan. 22 and Feb. 6.

Video: RAW | Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 01.24.23

Usually, the prospect to relaxation and reset the physique over the All-Star Break is a significant optimistic for groups, nonetheless this yr’s break could come at a poor time for the Oilers. Edmonton has been buzzing alongside previous to the recess, successful their final six contests. Whatever the schedule, the Oilers head coach retains the give attention to ‘the day’s enterprise’ and getting ready for Wednesday evening’s competitor.

“We take the schedule because it comes. There’s an outdated saying in hockey, generally you get the schedule and generally schedule will get you,” Woodcroft stated. “For me, the best way this week offered itself provided a novel alternative to work at completely different areas of our sport. I assumed we have had a productive couple of days, however ultimately, it is about getting ready to play in opposition to a really aggressive Columbus Blue Jackets workforce that’s going to play us arduous tomorrow evening.”

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