The Edmonton Oilers have not have a good season thus far and it seems like they are now entering full on desperation mode.
As all of our readers will already know the Oilers announced the much anticipated firing of general manager Peter Chiarelli back in January and although that was unquestionably the correct move, if perhaps one that was long overdue, the team still very much has to deal with the hand that Chiarelli dealt them during his time as general manager of the team. That means with the Oilers currently 3 points out of a playoff spot and with only 32 games left to go in the 2018 - 2019 National Hockey League regular season, they need to figure out a way to get back to their winning ways if they want to see the post season.
It's a huge burden for the Oilers players and Oilers head coach Ken Hitchock to hoist on their shoulders and it already seems like it is resulting in some rather desperate decisions internally within the Oilers organization. According to a report from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun, it now appears that the Oilers have made a rather controversial line up change. Jones reports that the Oilers now intend to pair superstar forward Connor McDavid with two forwards who have generated very little production this season, Ty Rattie and Milan Lucic.
Head coach Ken Hitchcock came back from the 10-day break needing to figure out a way to make chicken salad out of chicken feathers and decided on a reboot that is either inspired or insane.
Playing with either Leon Draisaitl or Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Connor McDavid had scored 29 goals and produced 73 points. He was on a pace for a 50-goal and 125-point season after winning the NHL scoring race and Art Ross Trophy two years in a row with 100 and 108-point seasons.
But now he’ll head into the final 32 games with Ty Rattie, a player who has just been waved through the NHL, on one wing. And Milan Lucic, a guy with the worst goals-per-million-dollar ratio in the league throughout the 2018 calendar year at two for $6 million, will be on the other.
It's hard to forget that the Oilers could in theory still have weapons like Jordan Eberle or Taylor Hall to wield alongside the talented McDavid and when Lucic and Rattie are the names that you have to replace those it has to be a very difficult pull for everyone involved to have to swallow. It's frankly embarrassing that this is the current state of the Oilers after Chiarelli's failed management and you have to wonder how much magic McDavid can really produce when he has two guys who have combined 7 goals and 15 points over the entire 2018 - 2019 NHL regular season thus far.