Is Ralph Krueger Done With The Oilers?

Jonathan Willis
April 17 2012 01:40PM

Multiple reports out of Europe suggest that Edmonton Oilers associate coach Ralph Krueger will not be returning to the team.

Commenter Alex Mathis passed along the following link to 20 Minuten, a daily language newspaper published in Switzerland. It’s always dicey to use Google Translate, but it does typically pass along the gist of the story. Translated from the article:

Ralph Krueger's contract as an “associate coach” in Edmonton has expired and will not be renewed. He says, compared to 20 minutes online, that he once again looking for a change of air: “I have learned so much in Edmonton. But now I want to again take over a team and work as a head coach.” The question is: Where is Ralph Krueger head coach? A promotion to head coach in Edmonton is unlikely.

Even Ralph Krueger does not expect a top job in the NHL. “I have not done any interviews and will now plan my future in peace. But this much I can say. The goal is to take over Western Europe to a team as head coach.” He leaves open whether a club team or a national team.

If just one outlet were running with this story, it would be a bit more open to question. However, that news is also being reported in other outlets – a quick Google news search reveals 79 related articles, many of them in highly reputable European newspapers.

Tom Renney’s future is still uncertain, but it would appear that Ralph Krueger is decided on his.

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Jonathan Willis is Managing Editor of the Nation Network. He also currently writes for the Edmonton Journal's Cult of Hockey, Grantland, and Hockey Prospectus. His work has appeared at theScore, ESPN and Puck Daddy. He was previously founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue. Contact him at jonathan (dot) willis (at) live (dot) ca.
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#51 justDOit
April 17 2012, 11:31PM
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Kevin wrote:

Have no fear Buckky's still around and due for a promotion and don't forget theres still Semenko around maybe he'll join the coaching ranks after his cushy scouting post. In true Oiler fashion.....I mean they are thinking about bringing Laroque back for a tryout ?? I'm sure Semenko can still skate. Hmmm don't want to be putting ideas into Lowes or Tambos head.

I haven't heard that the Oilers are interested in Georges - only that HE is interested in resuming his career. And this was reported as his book tour is coming to a close. Smells like more of a publicity gimmick than anything.

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#52 Weasel Wellwood
April 18 2012, 02:04AM
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Kneejerk reaction: This isn't good.

Upon reflection: It still isn't good, although I'm uncertain as to how bad it actually is.

Things I think I know: I like Ralph, he comes across as a very likeable individual. The players like Ralph too. And so did the players on the Swiss team(s) he coached. They bought into his system and at the Worlds, his teams usually far outperformed media expectations. Ralph isn't afraid to mix it up. Whilst Tom Renney was on injury reserve, Ralph's experiments with different line and defence pairings worked out quite well I thought. Ralph knows defence.

Things I know I don't know: How much input Ralph had on special teams. If it was his powerplay strategy, his leaving may turn out to be disastrous. If he would be considered as a head coach in Edmonton. If the players would play for him. Although the players on pretty much every other team he coached did, would he be 'too nice,' a guy for an NHL club?

Conclusion:

This isn't good.

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#53 gord962
April 18 2012, 12:23PM
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@Weasel

Coaching was hardly the reason for Edmonton's improved powerplay - the improvement was more to do with RNH than anything else.

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#54 Zamboni Driver
April 19 2012, 04:16PM
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I love the NO I LIKED HIM brigade that comes out every single time there is a suggestion of change.

Really?

You liked RALPH KRUGER?!

Why?

List his tasks and how he excelled at them?

These are the same people who "really like Todd Marchant" and "really like Robbie-got a bum rap from the Oilers..and 29 other teams that saw him skate"...Ohh no! Not DICK TARNSTROM! I really like him!

Good lord.

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