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BLOG: Oilers keep it light at last practice

Players swap handedness in a big scrimmage, ending their final practice on a light note

by Paul Gazzola /

EDMONTON, AB - Leon Draisaitl wasn't filling the net like he usually does at Oilers practice on Friday.

The Oilers forward is one goal from 50 on the year but when the Orange & Blue took to the Downtown Community Arena ice, the German was struggling to get a grip on his stick.

This, maybe, because he was using a right-handed twig despite being a lefty. It was the last Oilers practice of the season, so the club kept it light, opting to play a scrimmage with their wrong handedness.

"It's impossible," said Draisaitl following the skate. "It really is impossible… but it's a lot of fun."

Video: RAW | Leon Draisaitl 04.05.19

Of course, the Deutschland Dangler will wield his Warrior lefty on Saturday when the Oilers compete in their final game of 2018-19, closing the year with a Battle of Alberta tilt. But on Friday, the collective was trying to keep things relaxed.

"I'm not ambidextrous or however you say it at all," laughed Milan Lucic. "I'm sure we looked odd out there with our different hands on our sticks."

The hulking winger detailed the intentions of the group and remarked how much the team has come together over the campaign.

"Just have some fun," he said. "Regardless of how the season went, obviously it's a disappointment, but it's a good group.

"We enjoy being around each other. We enjoy coming to the dressing room and having fun. It's unfortunate that we're not gearing up for a playoff run but at the end of the day, it's a good group of guys and it's nice to have one last practice where we can have some fun."

Video: RAW | Milan Lucic 04.05.19

The Oilers wrapped up their final home game of the season Thursday in a 3-2 loss to the San Jose Sharks, concluding their Rogers Place schedule with a 18-19-4 record.

"It'll be a competitive game for sure," added Lucic about Game 82. 

"Doesn't matter what time of the year it is. When it's the Battle of Alberta, it always means something. The rivalry is there. There will be fans amped up for the game tomorrow and so should we as players."

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