Oilers not ruling out Connor McDavid for Heritage Classic

Oct 11, 2023; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Edmonton Oilers forward Connor McDavid (97) reacts to the a goal being scored against the Vancouver Canucks in the second period at Rogers Arena. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid could return to the lineup for the NHL Heritage Classic on Sunday, but is not expected to play Tuesday or Thursday.

McDavid was ruled out of Tuesday’s game at Minnesota and is doubtful to return for Thursday’s game with the New York Rangers. The three-time Hart Trophy recipient initially was thought to be out for 1-2 weeks with an upper-body injury sustained Sunday in a loss to Winnipeg, but the Oilers will keep the door open for his return this weekend.

“I’ve learned when it comes to Connor nothing is off the table,” Edmonton coach Jay Woodcroft said of getting McDavid back in the lineup against Calgary. “I think the way I took the (injury) news, I tried to hint towards it after the game, we think it’s something more muscular than anything.

“Sometimes that takes time and it’s good news. I take that as good news and I take that time frame that was put out there yesterday as good news. We’ll see how he does. He just has to get healthy here.”

McDavid, 26, hasn’t missed a game due to injury in three years.

He grabbed for his left side in the third period of the loss to the Jets. He has eight points (two goals, six assists) in five games.

Woodcroft said forward Evander Kane would step into McDavid’s role on the power play.

“Obviously, nobody is going to fill his shoes,” Kane said.

–Field Level Media

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