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Oilers’ Hall sounds upbeat thanks to health, familiarity

Aug 23, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

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Offseasons have been difficult for Edmonton Oilers winger Taylor Hall beyond the disappointment of badly missing the playoffs. It seems like he’s had to deal with coaching change and/or rehab from a season-ending injury just about every time it gets hot outside.

That’s different this time around, and while some of the quotes provided to the Edmonton Sun seem like familiar refrains about entering a big season, Hall might have a point about some of those pluses.

“That’s a really nice way to go into a year,” Hall said. “There is no awkward handshake at the start of the season (with new coach), it’s a business-like attitude now. I think [head coach Dallas Eakins] feels really comfortable that way and I think all of us players over the course of 82 games got to know what Dallas expects from us and now we can hit ground running at camp.”

More than a few people were calling for Eakins’ head during the 2013-14 season, and even if his style truly might not translate to the NHL, it’s easy to see why Edmonton might want to finally stabilize a worldview that has become volatile even as top prospect after top prospect falls into the Oilers’ laps.

Hall’s injury history makes a solid argument that luck hasn’t always been on Edmonton’s side, either. Maybe a healthy offseason – literally and figuratively, considering some strong signings – will help the Oilers finally turn the tide, though?

(H/T to Kukla’s Korner.)

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