A long time veteran of the National hockey League may have just hit the low point of his career and it comes off the heels of some very unfortunate circumstances.
First, let's get to the news. According to a breaking news report from Sportsnet's Mark Spector, the Edmonton Oilers have just released veteran forward Scottie Upshall from his professional tryout offer. The news honestly comes as very little surprise given how Upshall has failed to showcase his skills to any degree during training camp but nonetheless this has to feel like a huge blow to Upshall. For the first time in his career Upshall is now facing the possibility of entering the 2018 - 2019 NHL regular season without a contract under his belt and given his medical status it seems unlikely that another PTO is going to be coming his way.
Upshall's problems began almost immediately upon joining the Oilers in training camp. When he arrived in Edmonton Upshall failed to pass a physical and medical examination and it wasn't until Septmeber 17th, just one week ago today, that he was cleared for playing by the Oilers medical team. It seems however though that by the time Upshall received the green light from doctors to return to action that the Oilers had already made up their mind to move forward without him.
In the 7 days since being cleared Upshall would go on to appear in a total of 0 preseason games for the Edmonton Oilers. With that in mind it seems fair to suggest that general manager Peter Chiarelli and head coach Todd McLellan were only keeping him around at that point on the off chance that one of their players might go down and a veteran like Upshall could serve as a quick and very suitable replacement on the roster. That time never came however and Upshall got absolutely no playing time before being dismissed from the team.
At 34 years of age the former Nashville Predators 1st round pick *(6th overall) in the 2002 National Hockey League Entry Draft is definitely on thew wrong side of his career and with the lingering knee injury likely to be a major red flaf for teams looking for veteran depth I'm not certain how likely we are to see Upshall on an NHL roster this season. Upshall may find himself in a scenario that so many NHL veterans have found themselves in over the past few years where he will continue to work out and stay in shape and hope that an injury to one player or another will open up an opportunity for him on an NHL roster.
It's unclear at this time if any teams around the league currently have interest in Upshall of if any teams are even considering him as a potential back up option in the event that they suffer a significant injury to their roster. Over his 750 game NHL career Upshall has recorded 138 goals and 147 assists for a ttoal of 285 points and he also boasts 615 career penalty minutes to go with that. With that much experience I'm almost certain he still has some value he can bring to the table.