The Oilers made substantial roster changes with Kailer Yamamoto, Caleb Jones, Ryan Mantha, Ziyat Paigin and Dylan Wells being given the night off. This changed the defense drastically and gave Stuart Skinner a chance to showcase himself.
The Jets roster remainder relatively the same with Jamie Phillips swapping the starting role with Mikhail Berdin. Berdin assumed the role of backup for the night and did a great job of wearing a ball cap all night. To be fair, Oilers backup for the night Shane Starrett also did an amazing job of hanging out in case there was need for his services.
We’re going to let the highlight reels showcase the moments of greatness.
Stuart Skinner: The Lethbridge Hurricane was steady in net for the Oilers. Although he had some control issue with rebounds, he made 26 saves for the shutout.
Jamie Phillips: Not to be out done by the victorious Oilers netminder, Phillips was very busy all night turning away 36 of the 38 shots he faced.
Steven Owre: Owre played with much more speed today than he did yesterday. He was present on the backcheck and generated offense with linemates Luke Coleman and Laine Bauer.
Sahvan Khaira: One of the replacements tonight, Khaira was steady. There was nothing spectacular or flashy about Khaira’s game, it was positionally sound and incredibly effective. Not an offensive defenseman, Khaira played exactly to his strengths and kept his shifts stable in the Oilers zone.
Pace: This game was not very entertaining to watch. Honestly it felt like Saturday night shinny in Oliver more than a group of young players trying to make an impression with their respective pro club.
Michael Spacek: The Czech forward looked slow, and it cost the team several great scoring chances. The knock of Spacek has always been consistency, but tonight it just looked like he was missing the top gear. He was unable to maintain separation on a breakaway, and lost a 3 on 2 advantage on a turnover because of the speed that he carried the puck through the blue line.
Kirill Maksimov: The big Russian fought the puck a lot tonight. He was struggling to keep the zone on the powerplay, and just didn’t seem comfortable with the puck. He is playing on the top line with Joe Gambardella and Chad Butcher who have show decent chemistry so far, maybe a look on another line would help him have success on Monday.
Sami Niku: A late round pick, Niku has steadily moved up most people’s Winnipeg Jets prospect rankings. Tonight Niku was all over the place... mostly for less than ideal reasons. Niku was inconsistent on defense, at times he was in position and on point. At other times he was fixating on a player who did not have the puck, allowing someone with to puck to get around him to the front of the net. His offensive decisions were interesting as well. It’s not uncommon for European players to need some time to adapt to North American hocket, let’s chalk this performance on that.