Defenceman Tom Gilbert finding his game

EDMONTON - Given his own struggles during a season that's been full of them for the Edmonton Oilers, Tom Gilbert didn't seem a likely candidate to rediscover his game.But that's exactly what he's done.Not only is Gilbert playing his best hockey of the season, he's doing it on a blue-line Sean Taylor Jersey thinned by the trades of Lubomir Visnovsky, Steve Staios and Denis Grebeshkov and season-ending injuries to Sheldon Souray and Ladislav Smid.With two a sists in a 5-4 overtime win over Colorado in Wednesday's home finale, Gilbert has 12 points in his last nine games Spencer Long Jersey . He had just 15 in his first 71 games.With almost everybody else gone, Gilbert is back.Being paired with trade deadline acquisition Ryan Whitney has helped."I've been finding the right spots at the right time," Gilbert said. "I'm making more plays with the puck, which is a big difference from when I was struggling earlier Josh Doctson Jersey on. I wasn't making that first pa s in the defensive zone."That's where it all starts, in the defensive zone, making that first pa s. Plus, I've got Whitney, who can make that first outlet pa s, too. He creates open ice for me. That allows me to jump up in the play."After ama sing 45 points in 2008-09, there were high expectations for the 27-year-old Gilbert this season. But he managed just two points, both a sists, in his first 16 games.Then Souray was lost for the season with a broken hand and Smid went down with a neck injury requiring surgery. At the trade deadline, Grebeshkov was Dustin Hopkins Jersey dealt to Nashville and Visnovsky was sent to Anaheim for Whitney.
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