It’s only been five months, but we finally have an actual opponent on the other side of the ice. After a long summer due to a shortened COVD season in 2020-2021, the Oil Kings start their 2021-2022 preseason campaign against the Red Deer Rebels. These two teams could not have been more on different ends of the spectrum last season with the Oil Kings posting a stifling 20-2-1 record, while Red Deer struggled with a 4-15-4 record. Last season does not matter, especially in junior hockey with the turnover in players. Edmonton is looking to get off to a hot start as they are attempting to capture their third consecutive WHL Central Division banner.
Edmonton will be without Ethan Peters (TOR), Dylan Guenther (ARI), Carson Latimer (OTT) and Jake Neighbours (STL) as they are all currently attending NHL training camps.
Cossa and Ungar will get the starting nod in tonight’s contest. Cossa is coming off of a stellar 2020-2021 campaign which saw him post a 17-1-1 record with a .941 SV% and 1.57 GAA, he capped off that campaign getting drafted in the first round by the Detroit Red Wings. Ungar comes over from the Brandon Wheat Kings where he only got to play 8 games last season, he had a 5-2-1 record with a .904 SV% and a 2.87 GAA.
For Jaxsen Wiebe and Liam Keller this is the first time since being traded that they will play their old teams.
Keeler was able to pot one against his old team as he scored the tying goal in the second period. Jaylen Luypen and Jaxsen Wiebe would leave the game early which meant the Oil Kings had to finish the game with 9 forwards. Luypen was given five minute and a game misconduct for a hit in the second period on Kalen Lind.
Edmonton would kill off the the major, shortly after Red Deer would score what they believe to be the go-ahead goal, but it was waived off by the officials. Red Deer would play Edmonton strong in this game, but the Oil Kings were too much to handle, eventually adding an empty net goal and taking the game 5-3.
Powerplays were not friendly for either team has the Oil Kings would finish the game 0-7 on the powerplay while Red Deer would finish 0-6.
Cossa would finish the game for Edmonton allowing 3 goals on 31 shots, turning aside 28 of them.
Edmonton (1-0-0-0) will now go out on the road next week for two games against the Saskatoon Blades.
G Sebastian Cossa (DET), F Jalen Luypen (CHI), F Jakub Demek (VGS), F Josh Williams (PIT) and D Simon Kubicek (EDM) are all off to NHL training camps next week, leaving lots of room for depth to shine in Saskatoon.