Brad Hunt was back in the lineup for the Edmonton Oilers’ 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.
With 18:26 of ice time, Hunt got a regular shift, and led all defencemen with 4:52 of power play ice time, but did not figure in the scoring.
An Edmonton hockey beat writer said he did a credible job of being the seventh defenceman, filling in during an injury.
It was a good sign for the many local hockey fans rooting for the 26-year-old rookie out of Maple Ridge.
Hunt won a spot in the roster as an underdog in training camp, and started the first three games of the year with the team. He also scored his first NHL goal.
With the Oilers off to a slow start, Hunt was a healthy scratch for the next five games, before figuring into the plans Monday. He had been a -3 on the plus/minus stat, but most Oiler blueliners were well into the minuses.
Still, his situation had been looking eerily similar to last year, when Hunt got a three-game audition, was -3, and was sent back down to the minors.