Connor McDavid, the captain of the Edmonton Oilers and the NHL’s second-best scorer, will miss anywhere from two to three weeks of action with a left quad injury. The injury comes at a crucial time, with several teams fighting for Stanley Cup playoff spots in the Western Conference.
At the time McDavid went down, he had tallied 30 goals and 51 assists for 81 total points. He trailed teammate Leon Draisaitl (31 goals, 54 assists for 85 points) for the NHL lead and Oilers team lead. Both McDavid and Draisaitl led the Oilers with 11 power play goals apiece.
McDavid initially suffered the injury during a victory over the Nashville Predators last weekend. He tried to shake it off, but still felt tightness in his left leg.
McDavid even practiced on Monday, but the swelling didn’t go down. The Oilers opted for an MRI, which revealed a quadriceps injury.
“McDavid will be out a couple of weeks, but hoping he’ll be out less than that,” said Edmonton general manager, Ken Holland.
The Oilers snapped out of their late December funk. They recently moved into second place in the Pacific Division, and trail the first-place Vancouver Canucks (31-21-5) by one point.
The Pacific Division is jam packed, with five teams competing for the division title, including the Canucks, Oilers (30-20-6), Calgary Flames (29-22-6), Vegas Golden Knights (28-22-8), and Arizona Coyotes (28-23-8).
If the NHL playoffs were to begin today, the Oilers would have the #5 seed in the Western Conference with 66 points. Only three points separate the Oilers from the Winnipeg Jets, who sit on the bubble with 63 points.
Not the Knee, Eh?
Oilers fans and teammates were slightly concerned that McDavid’s recent injury could be related to his posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) injury he suffered in the final game of the season last April. The MRI showed that McDavid’s knee did not suffer any damage.
“The MRI also showed that his knee looks good,” assured Holland. “Totally unrelated.”
McDavid went to Toronto for treatment and rest while the team began a three-game road trip in Florida.
“He’s got his team of people there, the facility,” said Holland. “He’s going to do his treatment there while we’re on the road trip, and we expect to see Connor back here when we get back next Monday.”
On Deck: Florida, Tampa, Carolina, Boston
The Oilers ended 2019 with an ugly 4-10-1 stretch. Since New Year’s Eve, the Oilers have been playing their best hockey of the season with a 10-3-2 clip, including a fun line brawl and goalie fight against the Calgary Flames. The Oilers lose McDavid to an injury at a pivotal point in the season with the playoff hunt heating up and fewer than 30 regular season games remaining.
The Oilers fly down to Florida to play two games against the Panthers (30-20-6) and Tampa Bay Lightning (37-15-2). On Sunday, the Oilers head up to North Carolina to play the Carolina Hurricanes (32-21-3).
The Oilers return to Edmonton to take on the Boston Bruins next Wednesday. The Bruins (35-11-12) are the top team in the NHL with 82 points.
The Edmonton Oilers are 25/1 odds to win the 2020 Stanley Cup, according to a recent update by William Hill.