Tyler Ennis is done for the remainder of the Edmonton Oilers best-of-five series against the Chicago Blackhawks. The veteran forward was hit from behind by Chicago’s Kirby Dach in Wednesday’s 4-3 loss in Game 3. Ennis left the game in considerable pain, unable to put any weight on one of his legs.
With Ennis out “indefinitely”, in the words of Dave Tippett, the Oilers will need to dip into their reserves. The club moved Andreas Athanasiou to the second line on Wednesday night, but success didn’t follow the speedy sniper.
Joakim Nygard (3 g, 6 a, 33 GP) and Patrick Russell (0 g, 5 a, 45 GP) are the most likely wingers to draw into the lineup on Friday afternoon. Russell doesn’t bring much offense, but is a steady forward who brings a physical edge, can kill penalties and play a responsible game.
Nygard, meanwhile, brings speed and skill to the table. He scored 21 goals in 52 SHL games during the 2018-19 season.
*Update*: TSN1260’s Jason Gregor is reporting that Tyler Ennis has a lower-leg fracture.
Hearing Tyler Ennis has a lower leg fracture...#Oilers— Jason Gregor (@JasonGregor) August 6, 2020
Defenseman Adam Larsson, meanwhile, did not play on Wednesday night. Reports came out 35 minutes prior to puck drop that Larsson was “unfit to play”. Caleb Jones made his playoff debut with Matt Benning, while Kris Russell replaced Larsson on a defensive pairing with Oscar Klefbom.
Larsson has not been ruled out for Friday’s elimination Game 4 against the Blackhawks. According to coach Tippett, he will be reassessed after the team’s practice on Thursday.
Should Larsson not be able to play again, Jones is expected to remain in the lineup.