The Edmonton Oilers rookie defenceman Evan Bouchard has been reassigned to the OHL London Knights for further development. Bouchard was the 10th overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. The Oilers are dedicated to their prospect and youth movement this season, giving Bouchard a long look before sending him to London.
Edmonton Oilers Re-assign Evan Bouchard
Bouchard, 19, has seven NHL games played this season. These games had him scoring one goal. Bouchard skated in 67 games with the Knights last season. His tally with the Knights last season, 25 goals and 62 assists. This limited NHL production rate appears to be the primary reason to move Bouchard. The Oilers once again find themselves struggling to find their rhythm. This despite a roster that includes superstars like Connor McDavid. There are a lot of fan expectations on the team and this news brings that expectation and ire to the surface in social media. Many have already voiced the opinion that sending Bouchard back to the OHL is a waste of time. That the rookie would be better served by continuing to play in the NHL.
Oilers Prospect Shows Promise
In spite of the small goal output for Bouchard, he is as solid a defenseman as the Oilers have seen this season. He connects passes barring the occasional turnover and has good hockey sense. That said he has been a bit mistake prone and the Oilers have a number of defensemen that can step into the role. Kevin Gravel, Caleb Jones and Ethan Bear can contribute to the Oilers this season. Gravel has been called up to take Bouchard’s spot on the blueline.
By sending him back to the Knights to further his development the Oilers save a year in his entry-level contract. This move comes before the important 10-game mark, giving the Oilers time to further develop his skills while gaining experience with additional ice time.
The Oilers (7-4-1) currently sit in the number three spot in a restless Pacific division.
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