Drouin-Deslaurier odd man in?

DEREK VAN DIEST

, Last Updated: 1:18 PM ET

DALLAS -- Without him, the game would have been lost in the second period.

The Edmonton Oilers are resigned to the fact they'll start the year with three goaltenders on the roster.

Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers' performance in a 4-3 overtime loss to the Calgary Flames leaves them with little choice.

If they try to send the first-year goaltender back to the minors, it's likely he'll be lost on the waiver wire.

'OUTSTANDING'

"He was outstanding, absolutely outstanding in the game," said Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish following Friday's contest. "The third goal was a deflection, there wasn't much he can do on that.

"The first goal, Jarome (Iginla) schools every young goaltender with that shot normally. It's a good lesson for Jeff, but Jarome has that ability that you can't take your eye off him for a second."

After giving up a goal on the short-side to Iginla, Drouin-Deslauriers settled down, playing particularly well in the second period. With his team short-handed for most of the frame, the Oilers goaltender faced a barrage of shots. He finished the contest with 43 saves.

"I didn't expect to face a couple of five-on-threes in the game," Drouin-Deslauriers said. "But I think the guys who were killing the penalty did a good job of letting me see the puck. It's my job after that to make the saves."

ONE-WAY DEAL

Having signed a one-way contract extension this summer with the Oilers, Drouin-Deslauriers has to clear waivers in order to go back to the team's AHL affiliate in Springfield.

Yet with some teams in desperate need for a reliable backup, it's unlikely the native of St-Jean-Richelieu, Que., would be passed over.

Currently the Oilers are well situated in goal with Mathieu Garon and Dwayne Roloson. But it appears Drouin-Deslauriers is ready for the NHL.

"I think that's the only other hurdle is to see what he can do in the regular season," MacTavish said. "He's excelled at the American League level, he's excelled during the preseason here. The only thing left for him is the NHL regular season and he'll get some games."


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