July 24th, 2024

Oilers stars McDavid, Draisaitl played through injuries in playoffs: coach

By Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press on June 26, 2024.

Edmonton Oilers forward Zach Hyman (18), defenceman Darnell Nurse (25) and forward Dylan Holloway (55) react after losing to the Florida Panthers in game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup finals in Sunrise, Fla., on Monday, June 24, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

EDMONTON – The head coach of the Edmonton Oilers says some of the team’s top stars were playing through major injuries during their Stanley Cup playoff run.

Kris Knoblauch says Leon Draisaitl had hand and rib injuries that left staff questioning whether he could play, while forward Evander Kane had a sports hernia and captain Connor McDavid was also playing hurt.

He declined to disclose what ailment McDavid was dealing with, saying that was best left to the team’s medical staff.

The Oilers lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final to the Florida Panthers on Monday.

The game capped a roller-coaster season that saw Edmonton start with a dismal 3-9-1 record, fire head coach Jay Woodcroft and install Knoblauch in his place.

Under the new bench boss, the Oilers went on a near-historic 16-game win streak and finished second in the Pacific Division with a 49-27-6 record.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 26, 2024.

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