Saving Hall for home crowd

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:31 AM ET

He’s for your eyes only, Edmonton.

At least for his first game.

Canucks fans will have to wait a while before they get a look at Taylor Hall. Oilers coach Tom Renney says he won’t play the first overall draft pick in the first preseason game of the year tonight in Vancouver.

Instead, he wants to debut Hall in front of the home crowd.

“I think we’ll save him for here,” said Renney. “We’re trying to protect these kids a little bit and why should his first game be in Vancouver? I think our fans should be the first to see him.”

The Oilers host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.

BYE FOR NOW

Being cut can be a devastating experience, but Renney and GM Steve Tambellini tried to soften the blow for the first round of victims, meeting individually with all 20 players.

“I think it’s important for anybody who puts themselves out to be an Oiler and comes up short at this point in time needs to hear from the head coach,” said Renney.

“As an organization, it was really good that Steve and I sat in and invited thoughts from the guys and made sure they left knowing what was expected beyond that, and with nothing but encouragement.

“What we’ve done this week is certainly technically oriented … but we still had an opportunity to evaluate people and you have to give them something tangible to go back with, whether they’re going to college, junior or back overseas or Oklahoma City.”


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