The Edmonton Oilers play their first regular season at Rogers Place Wednesday night against the Calgary Flames.
“You want the guys to be revved up and emotional, but sometimes it can get away on them early,” says head coach Todd McLellan. “I know our team will have energy and be ready to go. It just has to be focused energy. We have to a high level of execution, especially in the first period.”
With Drake Caggiula day-to-day with a lower body injury and Kris Versteeg having signed with the Flames after going through camp with the Oilers, Anton Slepyshev will move up in the lineup and play right wing on a line with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Benoit Pouliot.
“He works hard every night. Just try to get a forecheck to start early and get him going in there. He can shoot the puck so we have to find him in the right spot,” says Nugent-Hopkins.
Milan Lucic, Kris Russell, Adam Larsson, Jesse Puljujarvi, and Jonas Gustavsson will all dress as for their first game in Oilers colours. After wearing number 19 in training camp, Puljujarvi has switched to number 98.
The Oilers expected lineup is:
Lucic – McDavid – Eberle
Pouliot – Nugent-Hopkins – Slepyshev
Maroon – Draisaitl – Puljujarvi
Pitlick – Letestu – Kassian
Klefbom – Larsson
Sekera – Russell
Nurse – Davidson
Coverage on the Oilers and Flames begins on 630 CHED at 6pm. (jrw)