The Edmonton Oilers announced several changes to the lineup tonight, including the emergency recall of goaltender Stuart Skinner. Mike Smith is out on a day-to-day basis, meaning Skinner will serve as backup for Mikko Koskinen tonight. Zack Kassian is also out for tonight with a back injury, while Kris Russell has left the team to attend the birth of his second child.
The Oilers take on the Vancouver Canucks this evening with both teams in very different situations than a year ago. Edmonton currently leads the Pacific Division with a 16-9-3 record, while the Canucks could retake a divisional playoff spot tonight with a win. Both Canadian franchises have struggled to find any real success in recent years, but have their eyes set on a postseason position.
Skinner, 21, is a third-round pick of the Oilers that spent the majority of last season in the ECHL, but has struggled during his short time in the AHL. The former WHL star is an interesting prospect, but there’s little reason to believe he could handle an NHL role if forced into it.