May 23, 2012, 8:48 PM EDT
The Edmonton Oilers are nearing the “seriously, start winning already” stage of their development. If they want to get there, they’ll need a great season from Taylor Hall – who’s approaching the first contract year of his career.
Recovering from shoulder surgery will be one of Hall’s biggest hurdles but he told Dan Tencer that things are going well so far. Hall said his rehab is “a little ahead of schedule,” allowing him to at least attempt to play in some pre-season games for 2012-13.
The 20-year-old forward improved on both his goals (27 from 22) and assists (26 from 20) despite playing in four fewer games in his second season. Either way, it’s a bit unsettling that his first two seasons in the NHL ended early because of injury issues.
Hall’s sturdiness is far from the only concern for a very flawed Edmonton team primed to make the first selection in a third consecutive entry draft, but it wouldn’t hurt to have him around for more than 65 games next season.
- Heeeeeere’s Johnny! Davidson shreds Johansen’s agent for ‘baffling, nonsensical’ contract demands 17
- Advantage Kuemper? Harding on crutches after ankle injury 9
- Done deal, finally: Wings ink DeKeyser to two-year, $4.375M extension 9
- Update: NHL wants to see fine system in action before publicizing diving 5
- Get your odds to make the playoffs for all 30 NHL teams 18
- Blue Jackets GM to Johansen: It’s about the team, not ‘one guy’ 25
- Will the NHL publicize divers? 48
- Report: NHL, Epix network to partner on Winter Classic reality series 18
- Habs to play without captain for just second time in franchise history 16
- Chiarelli: At some point, I’m going to have to trade a defenseman 54