David Perron finished the game with a goal and an assist as well as a shootout goal in the Oilers 5-4 come from behind victory tonight.
His play earned him 'Player of the Game' honours inside the locker room following the first victory of the season and Dallas Eakins' first as a NHL head coach. He wore his reward proudly in the dressing room following the game; a Canadian Military jacket which Eakins handed down to Perron following his performance.
The jacket arrived to Eakins from a friend by way of a soldier in Afghanistan. The token has great meaning to both the coach and the players as they begin a new tradition in the Oilers dressing room.
"I was looking for something for our team," said Eakins. "Something that meant something. Every team has got something for their player of the game and I really wanted ours to mean something and that jacket, there's no greater level of commitment, courage or teamwork. If people think you're under pressure when you've lost two games, well be under pressure in a war zone. That's pressure.
"We're playing a game. These are small challenges. I handed it off as a reminder to the player of the game that this is what we need. This is what we need from our team. It's a great reminder of the great sacrifices that our military puts forth to keep us safe."
"Dallas handed it to me and it came from over there from someone who gave it to him and it was passed on to him," said Perron. "I guess it's for the hardest worker or whatever it is and I'll get to pass it on for the next time we win the game to a new guy all the way down for the rest of the season."