The Edmonton Oilers certainly didn’t appreciate what Montreal Canadiens forward Lars Eller had to say about them.
Eller told reporters following Tuesday’s morning skate that he thinks the Oilers “play a little bit like a junior team.”
The Oilers didn’t look like a junior team at the Bell Centre, though, as they stormed back from a 2-0 deficit to beat the Candiens 4-3.
“They take a lot risks, a lot of chances. They’re a little all over the place,” Eller said prior to the game Tuesday. “There’s not a lot of structure always in their game. It can really be anything. You don’t know.”
Eller, who was minus-1 and held pointless on the night, said he prefers a different style of play. “I prefer a little more structured game. Then again, I don’t mind high-scoring games too,” he added.
Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins loved that Eller chose to say something like that.
“When a player like Lars Eller runs his mouth before the game, it makes for great banter in our dressing room and great motivation so we thank Lars Eller for his comments,” Eakins said after the game.
“That is a total Hockey God thing and I’m sure that young man learned his lesson and I highly doubt we’ll see anything like that out of his mouth again. … Loved it. They may as well have sent me over a fruit basket and a bottle of wine. That was a really great present that Mr. Eller laid on us.”
There were high expectations for the Oilers heading into the 2013-14 NHL season, but the team has struggled out of the gate, going 3-6-1 in the first 10 games. However, things may be turning around for the group as they’ve now won two in a row.
Tuesday’s meeting between the Oilers and Canadiens was the last time the two teams play one another this regular season.