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Dallas Eakins Prepares Oilers For Camp

from Joanne Ireland of the Edmonton Journal,

The rookie head coach said on Saturday he’s sent out a letter to all the players outlining his expectations, not the least of which will be a need to compete. He’s also determined to erase “young team” from the vocabulary.

“That’s the first thing I asked when I came in: do not refer to this as a young team anymore. We’re not a young team. We’re a team and our team is made up of some inexperience, some middle experience, and some very experienced players. When you call a team a young team you immediate alienate a bunch of guys and you make it about certain people and we’re not going to do that here,” said Eakins, who did not want to take away from the work the previous coaching staff had done.

What he did say was that the team would be very aggressive in the defensive zone and dogged on the puck.

“And as I said that first day,” he continued, “you will either compete hard or you will not play. I do not care how old you are, how much money you make, how much term you have left on your contract. You will compete, or, your minutes will be cut until you buy in. That’s the way it’s going to go.”

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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