Opinion
By Séamus Smyth

Edmonton Oiler Taylor Hall is again finishing off his season in the press-box after injuring his shoulder this past month.

It is the second time in two seasons where Hall has missed a notable chunk of the season due to injury. Considering how young and limber the tremendous prospect should be, his absence raises concern as to whether Hall is even capable of a full season without winding up on a hospital bed.

Hall is unquestionably one of the most talented Oilers and has all the tools to become one of the most dominant power forwards in the NHL. Yet every time he steps onto the ice he plays like an untrained pit-bull released into the wild for the first time. He’s been caught on tape crashing heavily into the boards, opposing players and even the goal posts.

When his teammate inadvertently stepped on Hall’s head with his skate on and Hall suffered one of the nastiest scars the hockey world has ever witnessed, Hall miraculously made a full recovery earlier this season.

But it again pointed out that although Hall is one of the most lethal players when healthy, he has thus far been one of the clumsiest and accident-prone as well.

He would have easily been awarded the Calder trophy last season if he had been capable of playing the full 82 games. He likely would have competed with Jordan Eberle for leading scorer on the Oilers this year. But in Hall’s first two seasons, he is a player that fans have been restrained to mere fantasies regarding his potential accomplishments rather than witness them on a full-time basis.

Hopefully Hall can lace his skates up for a minimum of 70 games next year. If not, Eberle will have to begin searching for a new BFF, as Hall and Ales Hemsky will have plenty of time to catch up as they become the two official Band-Aids of the Edmonton Oilers.

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