The Oilers Silver Lining: Ryan Potulny

This is Ryan Potulny. He's only played 10 games for the Oilers, but during those 10 games, he's been argueably one of the Oilers top 3 players.

In 10 games, Potulny has 5 goals and 2 assists for 7 points, yet still, a lot of fans and media think he'll be heading back to the AHL when some of the Oilers key players come back from illness and injury.

I might suggest not so fast.


Hemsky will be undergoing surgery to repair his shoulder and is done for the season. Comrie is still a lengthy time away from returning, and players like Patrick O'Sullivan, Robert Nilsson, Sam Gagner and others are just not providing a consistent enough effort to warrant removing someone like Ryan Potulny, who is.

Potulny has been brought on to play in all situations. At a strong plus/minus +1, he's done it successfully despite little NHL experience. On the powerplay, he's been one of Edmonton's more consistent threats and short-handed he's ranked in the top seven players for time-on-ice per game.

Potulny is quickly moving up the shot total ladder as well with a total of 24 shots in 10 games and a team leading 20.8% shooting percentage. He's taken 108 faceoffs, which is seventh on the team, but in only 10 games and while his percentages aren't great, they're better than a whole lot of other players on this team at 41.7%.

A rash of injuries got Potulny his shot at the NHL. It's a safe bet, that even when the injuries lessen, Potulny's play is what will keep him there.

3 comments:

As much of a trying season as this has been, 2 players have jumped out to myself as a bright spot. Potulny and Brule. Penner isn't included, I always knew he was a gamer, so I ma not surprised by his play, thankful though. If you look at what he has accomplished in less than half the games of others, I believe Ryan has more than earned his full time role.

Di-Hard Oiler
November 28, 2009 at 7:16 AM comment-delete

I don't know that Potulny will clear waivers.

November 28, 2009 at 9:12 AM comment-delete

At $595,000 and an RFA at the end of the season, I'd virtually guarantee and team will scoop him up.

At the start of the season it could have been questionable, but not now. Not in my opinion anyways.

November 28, 2009 at 10:19 AM comment-delete

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