McDavid says Oilers have ‘long way to go’ entering season

EDMONTON — Connor McDavid mentioned there may be numerous paintings forward for the Edmonton Oilers even when they reached the Western Conference Final final season.

McDavid and the Oilers input this season in a identical place to 2017-18, once they had been coming off making it to Game 7 of the 2017 Western Conference Second Round in opposition to the Anaheim Ducks however failed to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs the following two seasons.

“We really only won one more game than we did in 2017,” the Edmonton captain mentioned Monday following a casual scrimmage. “It feels like we were closer last year than the previous year, but it was one win. We still have a long way to go and we know that. It takes everybody and it takes all season long. I’m just looking forward to getting going, and being back here to see everybody.”

The Oilers defeated the Los Angeles Kings and Calgary Flames within the first two rounds of the playoffs prior to being swept by way of the Colorado Avalanche. It used to be the primary time Edmonton made it to the convention ultimate since dropping the Stanley Cup Final to the Carolina Hurricanes in 2006.

“You look at little bit of what Colorado had, they had a lot of injuries, they had a lot of things go against them and they just took everything in stride and ultimately were the last ones standing,” McDavid mentioned. “It takes everybody, it takes a whole organization and it’s good to get everybody under one roof here.”

In 2016-17, the middle’s 2nd season within the NHL, the Oilers made the playoffs for the primary time in 11 seasons. They subsequent reached the postseason in 2020 however misplaced their opening sequence to the Chicago Blackhawks, then had been swept by way of the Winnipeg Jets within the first spherical in 2021.

“There is lots of expectations this year, both outside and in the locker room,” McDavid mentioned. “Last year was a step forward, but we’re going to come in here and start all over again and build on what we accomplished last year. Nothing is for free in this league, we certainly know that and we’re just excited to get things going.”

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McDavid mentioned the Oilers’ struggles after the 2017 playoffs are “a big lesson, it’s something that we can learn from. … You can’t take anything for granted in this league.”

McDavid led the League with an NHL career-high 123 issues (44 objectives, 79 assists) in 80 video games final season and had 33 issues (10 objectives, 23 assists) in 16 playoff video games. The Oilers go back a core that still comprises forwards Leon Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Evander Kane and Zach Hyman, and defenseman Darnell Nurse. McDavid, Draisaitl, Nugent-Hopkins and Nurse had been additionally at the 2016-17 crew.

Edmonton additionally has a brand new goalie, having signed Jack Campbell to a five-year $25 million contract ($5 million moderate annual worth) on July 13. He’s anticipated to be their No. 1.

“I think it’s turning more into a culture,” McDavid mentioned. “Every season, a team seems to catch fire and that’s their year and it kind of fizzles out. I think we’re building a culture here in Edmonton and it translates from year to year. It’s the same core guys every year that are setting the tempo and pace and kind of leading the way. I think that’s kind of the difference [from 2017].”

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