SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers' Nail Yakupov fun to watch

Oilers forward Nail Yakupov has never heard of the sophomore jinx (Ian Kucerak, Edmonton Sun).

Oilers forward Nail Yakupov has never heard of the sophomore jinx (Ian Kucerak, Edmonton Sun).

Terry Jones, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:09 PM ET

At this stage of the pre-season the focus is mostly on the new flavours.

Like the exceptional performance of 18-year-old seventh overall draft pick, defenceman Darnell Nurse who simply refuses to look out of place.

Like trade acquisition David Perron who has shown nothing but positives to this point.

Like Russian Anton Belov who passed his first test on NHL ice wearing Oilers silks since arriving late to camp due to visa problems.

But focus on those guys or any of the other new flavors added this year by new GM Craig MacTavish and you stil can’t help but have your eyes detour to to last year’s new flavor — No. 1 overall pick Nail Yakupov.

In the post-game interview room Saturday your correspondent checked with new coach Eakins to see if it was just me or if there was comfort and confidence level way beyond what we saw with Yakupov in most games last year.

“It’s funny, we were just talking in the back about him. And the guys who were here last year


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