Oilers President/GM Peter Chiarelli provided some encouraging news following Sunday’s practice in Boston, announcing that Oscar Klefbom’s injury is minor and the defenceman could rejoin the team during the road trip.
The Swede won’t play Monday vs. Boston, though, meaning either recently-recalled Nikita Nikitin or former Bruin Andrew Ference will draw into the lineup. Head Coach Todd McLellan said that decision will be made later today,
Klefbom has been debatably the Oilers top defender this season, scoring 12 points in 30 games and averaging 21:53 TOI. It’s a big, albeit temporary, hole to fill on the back end.
“For a young player, he’s given us some very, very good minutes,” McLellan said. “We’ll definitely miss him, but as he goes out there’s an opportunity for somebody else to step in. We will be tested and that individual who comes in will be tested too. It gives us a good evaluation tool.”
Brandon Davidson is one of the Oilers blueliners who will have to shoulder a greater load with Klefbom out.
“Oscar does a tremendous job out there and is a big part of our team,” he said. “The rest of us, as a group, will have to step up and fill that void. It’s a great opportunity for all of us.”
Edmonton’s D was effective against the Bruins on Wednesday, Dec. 2 at Rexall Place, limiting them to just two goals in a 3-2 shootout victory.