June 24 2012 11:27PM
I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if the Edmonton Oilers name Ralph Krueger as their new head coach in the next couple of days. I'll resist a reference to "Oilersnation has learned . . ."
I don't know from first-hand information Krueger has the job because the Oilers have been predictably tight-lipped about the matter since letting Tom Renney walk, and I don't have people slipping me tidbits of information on the down-low like they used to during my days working the beat.
But I know I read or heard somewhere Krueger had the inside track. The problem is, media guys these days are so busy regurgitating information as their own without attribution (and without checking the reliability of it) – that's a pet peeve of mine, dating back awhile – it's easy to lose track. All I know is, if it turns out to be Krueger, I didn't have it first.
Bob Stauffer did. At least he was the first guy -- against a steady flow of talk about Brent Sutter from a lot of people, including me – to insist repeatedly Krueger was a contender. On and on he went, for a couple of weeks at least, on Oilers Now on 630 CHED before the rest of us jumped aboard. The first couple of times I heard it, I thought, "No way." Now? Seems like a pretty good bet, no?
THIS JUST IN . . .
On May 24th I wrote: "Today, Stauffer is hinting associate coach Ralph Krueger should be or is a strong candidate to take over from Tom Renney as head coach. While I'm of the mind Brent Sutter is and should be the leading candidate for the job – my take is based on circumstance and gut-feel rather than inside information – Bombastic Bob has my attention. He should have yours, too."
"My guess is the hangers-on and coat-tail riders in town will be parroting the "Krueger is a serious contender" angle and spinning the idea as their own -- without attribution -- soon enough."
The above was the final paragraph in the May 24 item and what I suggested, predictably and like clockwork, has unfolded over the past couple of weeks or so. "I'm hearing it's Krueger," or "My sources say . . ." Terry Jones did a big feature on Krueger at The Sun. Timely. How many APG's have we heard from what's-her/his-name mentioning Krueger on Twitter?
With everybody wanting the story yesterday, a lot of thumb-typers are bashing off stuff to get it out there first and asking questions later. I've been guilty of that a time or two. Sometimes, too often, accuracy suffers in the name of expediency. Likewise, sometimes who actually gets it right and gets it first -- be it Stauffer or Jason Gregor or Jim Matheson -- is lost in a blizzard of Tweets and notebook items and guesswork on the radio.
That's meant as more of an observation than it is a condemnation of the way the media biz is going as websites and newspapers and broadcast outlets scrap for traffic. Attribution? That's old school. Listeners and readers don't care all that much who got it first as long as they get it now. So we put it out there.
Like I said off the top. my guess is we'll know soon enough if
Stauffer everybody had Krueger as the new head nailed all along.
Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.