Thursday, November 12, 2009

Grebeshkov Flying Home

The Oilers lost to the Sabres on Wednesday night, 3-1, and also lost defenseman, Denis Grebeshkov, to a knee injury in the final minute of that game, which really added injury to an insult. Grebeshkov was involved in a knee-on-knee collision, left the ice and wasn't seen again. The reports are saying that Grebeshkov has flown back to Edmonton and will miss the remainder of the current road trip, which has two games left; Sunday in Atlanta and Monday in Columbus. He will be re-evaluated at home and a more definitive timeframe will be assessed.

From the blueline, Grebehskov was having a pretty reasonable start to the 2010 season, scoring three goals and seven assists in the first 19 games of the season for the Oilers. He's second among defenseman in team scoring and usually logs over 20 minutes of ice per game, which is a substantial hole to fill, especially if the injury turns out to be long-term. This could be the sort of injury that Tom Gilbert needs to boost his season, which hasn't been very stellar to start.

ImplicationsAs an 11th round pick, Grebeshkov has done well for his Draft owner, Dale C., as Dale has moved up to 2nd place, thanks in part to Grebeshkov's 10 points. Those 10 points are nearly half of Dale's team total from the blueline, as Dale has not been able to count on all of his defensemen for his success, rather getting good production from his forwards and goalies. The loss of Grebeshkov almost suggests that his blueline will be hobbling into the Waiver Draft next week and is the most likely candidate for change.

In Box 13 of the Sheet, Grebeshkov is tied for the box lead in points with James Wisniewski of the Ducks. So either/or would have been a good pick to start the season, but this injury could make only one of them a good pick going forward. Grebeshkov was taken nine times, which is the second-most in the box, 10 selections behind Brent Seabrook of the Blackhawks.

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