Edmonton Oilers skilled forward Nail Yakupov sat out last night's game at his head coach's discretion. Dallas Eakins chose to make the call after Yakupov has struggled to produce early in the season.
"We just thought that he had gotten to a spot of frustration where the kid's passion is the score and he was just going to take it all on himself," said Eakins. "You can't do that. I don't care how good you are. You can't produce by yourself in this league. You have to use your line mates.
"It was more of a reset button for him and he can come back in fresh with a new perspective and we just started going through how we're going to go about this and how we're going to build this player. The guy's a young kid and he's got so much to learn about the game, the proper way to play the game. Once he grasps that, he's going to be a danger every time he steps on that ice."
Yakupov now understands that, despite his frustration, it's time for him to go to work and make his way back into the lineup.
"I think nobody is happy when they're not playing," said Yakupov. "It was frustrating but it's not my choice. It was coach's choice. That's a question for coach but I'm just getting ready for the next game and working hard. That's what I have to do, just work. It's all good."
Eakins says Yakupov will be back in the lineup very soon but he was unsure of whether or not it would be in the next game vs. Washington or the one after that in Pittsburgh.