The Edmonton Oilers haven’t had Ryan Murray in the lineup since late November, but they could be getting him back just in time for some added depth in the playoffs. The veteran defenseman has been assigned to the Bakersfield Condors on an AHL conditioning assignment, suggesting he’s ready to get back into a game after missing the last several months.
Murray has played just 13 games this season after signing a one-year, $750K contract with the Oilers last summer. He averaged just 13 minutes a night in those appearances and will likely receive even less than that if Edmonton’s current group can stay healthy.
As most teams have discovered, though, the Stanley Cup playoffs are a war of attrition, and teams that go on deep runs usually need eight, nine, or even ten defensemen. With over 400 games of NHL experience, Murray can fill the role of practice player until they need an extra body.
It’s a role he’s familiar with, given he won the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche last season without appearing in the postseason.