Kevin Lowe is more worried about Fernando Pisani than he is about who's going to fill his spot.
Not that Pisani, a popular and valuable member of the hockey club, isn't leaving a significant void while he recovers from ulcerative colitis, but Lowe's first concern is with the person, not the player.
"Particularly a guy like Fernie, who's such a good guy," said Lowe, who's confident somebody from inside the organization will come to the rescue.
"It's disappointing news for us from the hockey club's point of view because he's a veteran player, very reliable player. We keep our fingers crossed that things will turn out for him. In the meantime, it's an opportunity for somebody else to step up.
"I'm an optimist. I see it as an opportunity for somebody to step up and take that position for now."
The Oilers don't know when Pisani will be back, other than he won't be back for training camp or the first couple weeks of the season.