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Young Oilers hope this is the year for playoffs

AP - Sports
Young Oilers hope this is the year for playoffs

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EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) -- The Edmonton Oilers have been stuck in rebuilding mode for some time, but the hope this season is that this youthful bunch - laced with first-round picks - returns to a place this franchise used to dominate.

The postseason.

Indeed, the Oilers - a once-dynastic franchise - has not qualified for the playoffs in seven straight seasons. But there is a benefit to Edmonton's on-ice failings: The Oilers have been able to stockpile high-end talent in defenseman Justin Schultz and forwards Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Nail Yakupov, Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle.

Many inside and outside the organization believe Edmonton's collection of talent will eventually lead the Oilers back to a Stanley Cup, which would be their sixth. For now, though, a playoff berth would do just fine.

Edmonton opens against Winnipeg on Oct. 1.

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