Last night, one of the brightest young stars in all of sports went down with a major injury. Connor McDavid, the first overall pick in the 2015 draft, was injured last night after crashing into the boards driving wide to the net against the Philadelphia Flyers. McDavid tripped and fell awkwardly into the boards before getting caught between those boards and two Flyers defensemen. McDavid was slow to get up and then skated off the ice holding his shoulder. Head coach Todd McClellan said that McDavid would be out “long term”. McDavid was later seen in a sling and around midnight it was released that he suffered a left should injury. It has now been diagnosed as a broken clavicle, which will require surgery and will knock him out of action for a few months. This is not only a blow to McDavid and the Oilers, but the NHL in general.
In his first 12 NHL games, McDavid had five goals and seven assists, good for a point per game. His chemistry with line mates Benoit Pouliot and Nail Yakupov was growing each game. The Oilers started off the season 0-4, since they moved McDavid to that line, they’ve gone 5-4. McDavid’s and Edmonton’s turnaround would be more legit with a tough schedule coming up. On Friday, the Oilers are scheduled to play the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Penguins just happen to have Sidney Crosby, a player who McDavid is most compared to based of their skills and abilities on the ice. McDavid will also miss out on games versus the Los Angeles Kings, Chicago Blackhawks Detroit Red Wings and another matchup with the Penguins. He might also miss a game in Boston, which sucks because I was going to buy tickets to that game. People buy into this kids hype, for good reason, but what better way to legitimize your skill by going against the best of the best and seeing how he does. Unfortunately for NHL fans, that doesn’t look like it will happen this year.
McDavid is already changing the culture in Edmonton. Edmonton used to be one of the premier hockey destinations, with players like Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Paul Coffey and Jari Kurri leading the Oilers to four Stanley Cups in five years in eighties. Nowadays, Edmonton is best known for getting the number one pick four out of the last six years. Things are looking up in Edmonton, but they need McDavid to be healthy to really make a name themselves in the NHL.