From the Edmonton Journal:
“I’m just trying to do exactly what they want. I’m becoming a checker,” he said with obvious displeasure after Monday’s practice. “We’re just doing what we have to do to win games. I’m not complaining. It’s important to win the games. I just don’t feel as important as I did before when they were riding me. I don’t feel they use me as much as they did before. If they don’t give me the confidence or trust me, I will never be playing the way I was before, the way they want.
“I’m just saying I don’t care about points. I know I didn’t play my best hockey. I can be better and I know they will need me. But they have got to show me they need me. Ride me. It’s 10 games. I will feel important and I will get better every game.”
Read the entire article here.
Hemsky clearly isn’t happy with his current role with the club and Oilers fans and management should be happy about that. I’m sure Craig MacTavish would be more concerned if Hemsky wasn’t angry. He is the team’s best offensive player and really their only consistent source of offense this season, with Shawn Horcoff having a down year, Sam Gagner just recently waking up and the rest of the Oilers forwards not exactly standing out.
I think at some point (this summer) this team needs to make a move for a player that has the skills necessary to play with Ales Hemsky. He is arguably one of the top five passers in the NHL and needs someone to be able to consistently finish his passes. In my opinion, the issue is not so much with offensive turnovers as it is with the Oilers’ inability to find someone who can mesh with the ultra-talented Hemsky.