Eberle even more under microscope after bad turnover in Game 4
Todd McLellan wanted more from Jordan Eberle.
What he got was a brutal turnover that led to an Anaheim goal.
The turnover occurred Wednesday in the second minute of the second period of Game 4. The Oilers had a 2-0 lead, but the Ducks were pressing in Edmonton’s end.
It was then that Eberle got to a loose puck and had a chance to make a play along the boards -- either get it out or get it to center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
And if those two options weren’t available, eat it.
Instead, Eberle cleared it weakly to the blue line where Anaheim’s Brandon Montour was waiting. Montour passed it to Ryan Getzlaf, who ripped it past Cam Talbot to make it 2-1.
Eberle was soon demoted to the fourth line. He finished with just 11:39 of ice time. The Ducks won, 4-3, in overtime, tying the series at two games apiece.
Afterwards, Eberle’s coach chose not to pile on.
“He’s not the only one who made mistakes,” said McLellan, per the Edmonton Sun.
But it was a bad mistake at a bad time. And it was made by a highly paid player who was already under the microscope.
Game 5 goes tonight in Anaheim, and it remains to be seen where, and with whom, Eberle will play. But the 26-year-old winger could sure use his first goal of the playoffs. He only has two assists in 10 games, and he’s a minus-5.
Safe to say, if his play doesn’t improve, and if the Oilers don’t get past the Ducks, expect to hear Eberle’s name resurface in trade rumors this offseason.