Nikitin will miss his second straight game because he is being bothered by back spasms. That means that Brad Hunt will remain paired with Justin Schultz and play on the second power-play unit. Nikitin is day-to-day.
Nikitin (undisclosed) is a game-time decision for Monday.
Nikitin did not skate in the Oilers morning skate on Monday morning and could miss tonight's meeting with the Canadiens. The Oilers classified it as a "maintenance day" and a decision on his availability for tonight will come during warmups.
Nikitin (ankle) has been medically cleared to play in Thursday's opener.
Nikitin, 28, was acquired from Columbus this offseason to bring some added experience to the Oilers blueline. He had a breakout year in 2011-12, but has failed to eclipse the 20-point mark in any of his other four seasons. He will start his Oilers career on the second pairing with Mark Fayne; who will also be making his Edmonton debut.
The Oilers have signed defenceman Nikita Nikitin to a two--year deal worth $9 million.
The Oilers acquired Nikitin's rights from the Blue Jackets in exchange for a fifth-round pick. The 28-year-old Nikitin has had a very difficult time staying healthy. He missed 16 games this season with a combination of upper and lower-body injuries. He has missed a total of 54 games over the last three seasons (25.5% of games). However, when he is in the lineup he has shown flashes of top-4 defenseman. He had 32 points in his first year with the Blue Jackets but saw his production fall to two goals and 13 assists (15 points) last year.
Nikitin (upper-body) is doubtful for Saturday's game.
Nikitin played only 7 minutes and 16 seconds in Thursday's blowout loss to the Blackhawks. He left the game and did not return and will not play on Saturday. With Nikitin out, the Blue Jackets have recalled Frederic St. Denis from Springfield.
Nikitin left Monday's game after playing just 5:36 and did not return. This is a tough break for Nikitin who had a goal and four assists in his last seven games. Dalton Prout will step in on the blueline.