Edmonton Oilers fire Steve Tambellini, Craig MacTavish to replace him

Jonathan Willis
April 15 2013 10:02AM

As broken by TSN's Ryan Rishaug, general manager Steve Tambellini has been fired by the Edmonton Oilers.

Who replaces Tambellini? Both TSN's Bob McKenzie and CBC's Elliotte Friedman report that Craig MacTavish will be the Oilers' new general manager and that former Columbus G.M. Scott Howson will be taking over MacTavish's role with the team.

Club president Kevin Lowe will hold a press conference at 9:30 MT, at which point it is expected the team will officially confirm the reported changes. Update: Oilers confirm all of the above.

Initial Reaction

  • The decision to replace Tambellini was necessary and long overdue. For that alone, this was a positive move.
  • The Oilers are being pilloried on Twitter for the decision to replace Tambellini with an internal candidate, but while Craig MacTavish is seen by some as more of the same, that's likely not entirely fair. He was a strong head coach, and he only returned to the Oilers last summer. His CV is pretty strong and while nobody knows how well he'll do in the top job he's a bright hockey man and a legitimate candidate.
  • Also worth noting: the last time the Oilers went outside the organization, they ended up with Steve Tambellini. Sometimes the grass isn't greener.
  • Scott Howson previously worked as the assistant general manager in Edmonton before taking the top job in Columbus, and was obviously fairly successful in the role. The perception of him has changed markedly since then, but like other former G.M.'s - Don Waddell in Pittsburgh, John Ferguson, Jr. in San Jose - he may be better suited to a depth role. Certainly the Oilers wouldn't be expanding his role if they weren't impressed with his work in a similar role previously. 
  • Why not wait until summer? The obvious answer is that the team felt they had their guy in MacTavish. With that said, I'd have preferred seeing a full search in the summer that included external candidates. It's not like the Oilers have a bunch of trades and moves to make over the next few weeks.
  • This is a plum job. Is there a team in the league - outside of the current Stanley Cup contenders - that has more raw material to work with than the Oilers over the next few seasons? 
  • The perception that Steve Tambellini was just a puppet and that nothing will change until Kevin Lowe goes is not one that I buy into. The Oilers were a better team under Lowe than they were Tambellini, and when Tambellini came in there were significant changes in how the team was run - most notably in the head coaching department, where a pair of ex-Vancouver bench bosses were hired. 

To sum up: replacing Tambellini was a necessary move, and while I would have preferred a full search over the summer for a new general manager, MacTavish would have been a legitimate candidate in such a search. This isn't an ideal decision, but the Oilers are better in the hockey operations department today than they were yesterday.  

Comments from the Press Conference

  • Kevin Lowe thanks Tambellini and his family for their service to the Oilers, says he released him of his duties yesterday,
  • Lowe: "Despite showing areas of improvement... the fact of the matter is we are not where we want to be right now nore where we should be."
  • Lowe says that Craig MacTavish "played the lead role" in acquiring Justin Schultz last summer.
  • Lowe has lots of praise for other areas of the organization - the AHL, the WHL - but sharply critical of where the Oilers are now.
  • MacTavish: "I have great faith in Scott [Howson]."
  • MacTavish: "I'm an impatient guy, and I bring that impatience to this situation, and I think we're at the stage... where we have to do some bold things. We have to expose ourselves to some semblance of risk."
  • MacTavish: "I know every time I turn my alarm off there are 29 teams trying to beat my brains in."
  • MacTavish is on fire, hammering away on the need for the team to make immediate changes, to take some risks to get to the next level, to add depth to the organization. 
  • MacTavish: "It makes very little difference what I say today. What really, truly matters is.. what we do tomorrow."
  • Lowe, asked by Mark Spector how this represents meaningful change, says the team has much more ammunition now if what he means is that they aren't capable as a group. 
  • Lowe: "The timing didn't have anything to do with an article that was written."
  • Steve Tambellini had one year left on his deal.
  • Lowe on the 8-2 win over Calgary: "Even our biggest critics thought that we had arrived." Uh, no. 
  • MacTavish references the Oilers' five Stanley Cups when asked about how the group that made the mess that Tambellini couldn't clean up is going to do a better job than Tambellini did. That was a long time ago.
  • MacTavish says he doesn't know that he's ever failed the organization in any of his previous positions. 
  • Lowe: "You're talking about the team that came within one period of winning the Stanley Cup. Someone in the crowd: "Seven years ago."
  • Lowe: "Are you saying to me you're getting impatient after three years?"
  • Lowe says there's only one general manager in hockey who has won more Stanley cups than him, so he knows al ittle bit about winning.
  • Lowe: "The general manager makes the decisions in hockey, my position... is similar to the chairman... I'm a liaison to our owner Daryl Katz."
  • Lowe: I don't think there was ever a time when Tambellini wasn't able to do something he wanted to do, or I asked him to do something he didn't want to do.
  • MacTavish, asked about grit in the top-six: "Grit without skill, as I mentioned, is not something that's going to move the dial of our team forward."
  • MacTavish talks about acquiring "Milan Lucic-type" players, told "I don't know if you're allowed to say that." 
  • MacTavish, smiling, "Just happy times" when asked about this being the anniversary of his departure from the Oilers.
  • MacTavish: 'If you can't do the difficult things that this job requires, how can you ask your players to do them.' 
  • Lowe: "For the record, Craig stepped down four years ago... Tambi didn't fire him."
  • MacTavish: "If you're referring to the young core that we paid an exceptionally high price to acquire, we would part with those assets very begrudgingly."
  • Good news for Ralph Krueger; MacTavish says that the team's burned through four coaches and that it's very remote that coaching is the problem. "I give Ralph a lot of credit."
  • MacTavish: "My physical health is good," jokes that his mental health is open to discussion.

MacTavish came across pretty well, though as he says he's going to be judged on actions, not words. He repeatedly tossed Steve Tambellini under the bus during the press conference without mentioning his name, alluding to his impatience with the slow process of the rebuild, and talking about the need to take action, to take some risks to get ahead. The "if you can't do the difficult things line" was particularly noteworthy in that regard.

The low point was both Lowe and MacTavish referencing the Oilers' glory days victories at the press conference today. A Stanley Cup ring as a player (or five, for that matter) is a lot different than a Stanley Cup ring as a general manager - not that there isn't cross-over, but the skillset to build a team is completely different than the skillset to score a goal or block a shot. Neither man is doing a job on the ice today, and they shouldn't expect any forgiveness for a poor record in the front office based on their work on the ice. It's a different job. 

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#201 RSD
April 15 2013, 12:59PM
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@DSF

Whom would you have rather oilers hire, Mac T or Burke?

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#202 Light, Sweet, Crude
April 15 2013, 01:03PM
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@Fresh Mess

"And this organisation has no problem insulting non ticket buying fans while at the same time demanding the citizens of Edmonton, and perhaps Alberta, buy them a new building?"

Right? That's one of the more twisted things to come out of the press conference. I did not know that they only want 16 839 fans at a time.

What a dick thing to say.

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#203 The Other Ron Burgundy
April 15 2013, 01:04PM
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Will wrote:

Fair point, but don't we have other assets that could be traded for some of these things? I mean, a LW power forward with a bit less skill but a lot more size and grit, is not the most difficult player to acquire in the NHL. One with size and skill is hard to find mind you. But I think it's reasonable to think that if Semin is getting paid 7 mill per year, then why couldn't Hemsky be shipped in a hockey trade fro someone with a bit more size, but a bit less skill?

The reason I don't want our first round traded is because of all the high end large centre men that could potentially replace Gagner, thus making him tradable for some legitimate defensive help.

Or, if our sacrifice of Tambillini to the hockey Gods is favoured, perhaps we win the lottery and grab Seth Jones. Maybe he's not a number one guy right away, but he will be. I mean, imagine our future with Jones, Schultz, and Klefbomb on our blue, and Hall, Nuge, Ebs, and Yak on forward?

Also a fair point as Jones will (probably) be great, but even so that is unlikely to happen for several years. Since we'll likely be picking around 6 or 7, here are the D-men selected in that range for 2008-2011 (there were several selected in that range last year, exactly zero of whom played in the NHL this year):

2011 - Larsson 2010 - Gudbranson 2009 - Hedman, Ekman-Larsson 2008 - Doughty, Bogosian, Pietrangelo, Schenn

The first 2 are still very much up in the air as to how they will turn out, and while OEL and Pietrangelo have come into their own the last couple of years, Hedman is still a project, Doughty's early success has diminished, Schenn = Smid and Bogosian seems like he might be a bust. Even if we do win the lotto, if that pick helps us get a "Lucic-type" player or an existing top-pair D I would still go that route.

Hemsky and the pick you would think would fetch a pretty fair return. As would Gagner and the pick. Hemsky/pick/Marincin for Byfuglien I would do in a heartbeat for example, and that is the kind of price it will take to get someone of that caliber (if not more). The great part is however that we can pay that price - Yak takes Hemsky's spot (so we automatically have 50% less offsides per game) and Big Buff walks on to our top pair (after the burger weight comes off of course - Edmonton restuarant owners will also be helped by such a deal).

Or we wait another 2-3 years for Marincin and whoever we pick to maybe crack the roster. Me, I'm done waiting.

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#204 Lochenzo
April 15 2013, 01:09PM
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Competitiveness. We discussed this on a recent review of Kevin's tenure as coach and GM of the Oilers. And those of you promoting Brian Burke for the job definitely understand it. I didn't feel that from Tambi, granted that tanking to collect 1st overall picks means being patient, but this was the year where we could have used a little more competitiveness from the front office and maybe that would have translated onto the ice. Organizations are run from the top-down.

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#205 outdoorzguy
April 15 2013, 01:14PM
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We had an opportunity to put a new face on this organization.

Instead, the "Wizard of Oil" just pulled the curtain tighter around the controls.

All of pro sports and hockey fans everywhere realized today just what a true disgrace the Edmonton Oilers are and have been for some time.

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#206 madjam
April 15 2013, 01:15PM
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A new era being bought forth with MacT.. Should be a huge upgrade from slow underachieving Tams . Get over it ON we have lots to look forward to , as Mact. revamps lineup for next season . I'm looking forward to this .

Going outside the boys club bought us nothing but pain and anguish in the tenure of castawys such as Quinn and Tams . Wonder if Quinn will comment on this move ? Souray is probably having a good laugh .

MacT. will probably surprise most of us as hye transform team nto a contender in short order . Timing was right i might add - should shock the players into performing well the last 7 games !

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#207 rindog
April 15 2013, 01:16PM
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Dave Lumley wrote:

So, the team goes on a win streak now? Shades of MacTavish in 2007, lets win a couple and get a poorer pick.

The wonder lingers, but shame remains.

If they go on a winning streak now, the coach should be fired ASAP.

If a new GM motivates the current roster to play better, then we know the coach is not doing his job.

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#208 Craig
April 15 2013, 01:21PM
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Well, will Craig M try to sign Antoine Laganiere or is he too big for the Oilers?

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#209 madjam
April 15 2013, 01:22PM
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rindog wrote:

If they go on a winning streak now, the coach should be fired ASAP.

If a new GM motivates the current roster to play better, then we know the coach is not doing his job.

Residual leftover from Tams tenure perhaps ? Accustomed to losing and having to get first draft picks ? We want to win now , and show the fans the committment being better for next season Go Oilers GO .

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#210 Dave Lumley
April 15 2013, 01:23PM
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rindog wrote:

If they go on a winning streak now, the coach should be fired ASAP.

If a new GM motivates the current roster to play better, then we know the coach is not doing his job.

The question is why now? Don't you think that the "Big Four" sat down and discussed what should be done at the trade deadline. No one had input then when you could do something?

Now, when we can't do anything done we get MacTavish who is suddenly impatient.

At this point when we are out of the playoffs we want to tank it. We don't want to go on a run.

Why now? Why not at the end of the season when we have tanked, then lead the lamb to the alter.

Stupid move.

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#211 Jason
April 15 2013, 01:25PM
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jason wrote:

wow, that was the most gutless and cowardly performance i've ever seen. i'm no fan of tambo but for lowe and mact to get up their and act as though they had notning to do with this failure and let tambo take the fall for it all, was shameful. who the hell do you think you are lowe, without that group of guys (messsier,gretz etc) you wouldn't have won squat, if i was on that team i'd have five stanly cup ring to you clown, you were a mediocre coach and a terrible gm and president. your at best a mediocre man who rose to great heights on the backs of others and by letting other MEN take the fall for your mistakes, you gutless, cowardly insignificant excuss for a man.

Wow - you are a real prize. I would pay good money for you to say that to Lowe's face and watch him knock your teeth out the back of your skull.

You are such a loser it's pathetic.

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#212 etownman
April 15 2013, 01:26PM
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The bottom line here is that MacT knows what a winning lineup looks like, a Cup winning lineup! Some teams have had success but not Cup winning success! I have all the faith in the world that MacT will get the appropriate talent to surround Hall, Hopkins, Eberle, Yakupov & Schultz! Good times are just around the corner!

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#213 bazmagoo
April 15 2013, 01:31PM
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Khabibulin - 4 years @ 3.75 per year

Smyth - 2 years @ 2.25 per year (why 2 years?)

Belanger - 3 years @1.75 per year

Trading picks for Smithson and Fistric, both of whom are not exactly lighting it up

Not trading Whitney, Jones, Fistric, Peckham, Khabby for picks when they will all probably walk at the end of the season for nothing

Resigning Peckham

Over paying for Devan Dubnyk when he still hasn't proven he's a #1 goalie (I think he will prove to be, but he shouldn't be paid accordingly until he HAS proven it)

That's why Sleepilini got fired, never had the balls to make any big moves and didn't have the hockey IQ to avoid making small bad moves. It's can't get any worse, even with Lowe still at the helm.

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#214 DSF
April 15 2013, 01:32PM
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RSD wrote:

Whom would you have rather oilers hire, Mac T or Burke?

Burke.

Lowe, McTavish and Howson have already had numerous years to strut their stuff.

Changing their job titles does not change who they are or what they are capable of.

Been listening to sports radio out here on the west cost and everyone is laughing at the Oilers.

It's quite sad, actually.

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#215 The Soup Fascist
April 15 2013, 01:32PM
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Good afternoon, Mr. MacTavish.

Your first mission Craig, should you choose to accept it, is to surgically remove an Oiler's legend who is long past his due date and threatens the short-term success of the organization over the next year. We have dubbed it "Operation Ditch Smytty". This individual is God-like in the eyes of the fans (yes, even those of you who don't buy seasons tickets) so the matter must be handled delicately and efficiently. Should you fail in this regard, as always, the President of Hockey Operations will disavow ALL knowledge of you and the mission. This message will self-destruct in 10 seconds. Good Luck, Mr. Phelps, er ... MacTavish.

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#216 Dave Lumley
April 15 2013, 01:35PM
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etownman wrote:

The bottom line here is that MacT knows what a winning lineup looks like, a Cup winning lineup! Some teams have had success but not Cup winning success! I have all the faith in the world that MacT will get the appropriate talent to surround Hall, Hopkins, Eberle, Yakupov & Schultz! Good times are just around the corner!

Why in the world wasn't he doing his job over the last year painting Tambellini a picture of just what that line up should look like? Why, why, why?

Where's the integrity?

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#217 Jimmy
April 15 2013, 01:35PM
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Is there a team in the league - outside of the current Stanley Cup contenders - that has more raw material to work with than the Oilers over the next few seasons?

Yes, Ottawa

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#218 bazmagoo
April 15 2013, 01:36PM
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@The Soup Fascist

First order of business is buying out Horcoff, he just doesn't have it anymore and we can't have 5.5 million in cap space tied up in a player who is an above average 4th line centre. Captain or not, he needs to go.

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#219 DSF
April 15 2013, 01:36PM
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Jouni Nieminen ‏@OnsideWithJouni 5m

Last 4 Stanley Cup-winning GMs: Lombardi, lawyer, Chiarelli, lawyer, Bowman, lawyer, Shero, lawyer. None had their name on Cup as a player.

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#220 DSF
April 15 2013, 01:37PM
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bazmagoo wrote:

First order of business is buying out Horcoff, he just doesn't have it anymore and we can't have 5.5 million in cap space tied up in a player who is an above average 4th line centre. Captain or not, he needs to go.

Horcoff is MacT's left nut.

Not going to happen.

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#221 Word
April 15 2013, 01:40PM
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Kevin Lowe should have at least strung Brian Burke along for a few week... Just for a larf.

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#222 bazmagoo
April 15 2013, 01:45PM
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@The Soup Fascist

If you crunch the numbers you'll see that it does affect the Oilers ability to sign anyone of significance.

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#223 Hammers
April 15 2013, 01:49PM
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etownman wrote:

The bottom line here is that MacT knows what a winning lineup looks like, a Cup winning lineup! Some teams have had success but not Cup winning success! I have all the faith in the world that MacT will get the appropriate talent to surround Hall, Hopkins, Eberle, Yakupov & Schultz! Good times are just around the corner!

Totally agree . The one thing McT knows is players who contribute on the ice . I don't expect any Habby ; O'Sullivan, Belanger moves .Lets not forget he had 1 year as coach in the AHL and the guy reads the game well . Also will not be surprised to see any of Gags , Hemsky, Eberle( or 1 of top 6 ) trades. Expect interesting closing remarks with the players at season end .

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#224 bazmagoo
April 15 2013, 01:54PM
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@The Soup Fascist

What issues would you consider to be more pressing? Just curious to hear everyone's opinion on what needs to be changed in oil country.

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#225 Spydyr
April 15 2013, 01:55PM
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jason wrote:

shut up you chirpy little boy, if i want any lip from you i'll unzip my fly! i stand by my statement because it's true, and would have problem saying it to lowe's face or yours. piss off.

Take it to the bike racks after school. This is not Junior High.

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#226 Ducey
April 15 2013, 01:56PM
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DSF wrote:

Jouni Nieminen ‏@OnsideWithJouni 5m

Last 4 Stanley Cup-winning GMs: Lombardi, lawyer, Chiarelli, lawyer, Bowman, lawyer, Shero, lawyer. None had their name on Cup as a player.

Scott Howson - lawyer

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#227 The Soup Fascist
April 15 2013, 01:57PM
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bazmagoo wrote:

If you crunch the numbers you'll see that it does affect the Oilers ability to sign anyone of significance.

Certainly, I am nowhere near a capologist, but you have to think Hemsky is gone (assuming a buyer can be found) and Belanger / Eager are bought out. That leaves 19 million next year in capspace (roughly) with 8 guys to sign. If they sign Gagner next year that will be $4.5. Paajarvi will be cheap. Lots of room for UFAs, although the crop is poor and I am not sure I would go crazy next year on UFAs.

Maybe, it becomes an issue in 14-15 as RNH, Petry and Schultz are due, but they are still RFAs and we are not sure what the cap is going to be.

If you have concerns, let me know what they are. If you are saying we are getting a Weber - zero chance by the way -, then yeah we might need to look at buying out Horcoff. Otherwise, I dont think letting the bad contract play out, ties your hands. What player do you want to sign next year that the Oilers cannot afford?

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#228 Rob...
April 15 2013, 01:58PM
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DSF wrote:

Horcoff is MacT's left nut.

Not going to happen.

There's a Nick Fotiu joke in there somewhere.

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#229 Czar
April 15 2013, 02:03PM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

With all due respect

.... I also have significant concerns about the Oilers "braintrust" and will admit some of your comments today are not without merit.....

... HOWEVER, no one ANYWHERE gives a rodents rump, what fans of the least successful franchise in NHL history, living in the worst sports community in Canada, thinks.

In fact, if Canuck fans / media don't like the move, maybe I should be more positive about it.

This exactly!!

You want a good laugh look to the rafters Nuck fans. Or how about the biting and diving? What about the sister's being more worried about the battle for the top bunk than the one on the ice in the playoffs? Of course the Luongo BS has been a laugh a minute as well.

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#230 Oilers21
April 15 2013, 02:07PM
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book¡e wrote:

Just to be clear, Scott Howson is not the new GM, Craig MacT is. Scott is basically taking over the scouting duties MacT was doing.

Yes I know, my point was what exactly has he done to prove himself as an adequate evaluator of hockey talent? What could possibly have set him apart from other candidates?

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#231 Kevin Lowe
April 15 2013, 02:08PM
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jason wrote:

shut up you chirpy little boy, if i want any lip from you i'll unzip my fly! i stand by my statement because it's true, and would have problem saying it to lowe's face or yours. piss off.

You unzip your fly for little boys. Gross.

There is a special place in hell for people like you.

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#232 bazmagoo
April 15 2013, 02:10PM
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@The Soup Fascist

My concern is simply that we need the following:

- 2 bigger and better forwards - 2 bigger and better defencemen - 1 UFA goalie to push Dubnyk

That is if we want to compete. Let's say we were able to sign David Clarkson from New Jersey and Viktor Stalberg from Chicago as UFA's this summer. That would likely cost about 7.5 - 8 for the two of them. And that's IF they wanted to sign in Edmonton.

Then we need 2 solid defencemen, likely at around 7 million for two players of any significance.

Plus 1.5 million for a solid UFA backup that can push Dubby.

That puts us close to $70 million next season, or about 5.7 million over the cap which coincidentially is close to Horcoff's cap number.

One suggestion that I've read is trading Horcoff for another contract with the intention of buying out who you trade for, then resigning Horcoff to a smaller amount. I would be in favour of this, as I think Horcoff is a solid 3rd line centre. But you can't be paying your 3rd line centre $5.5 million against the cap if you intend to compete in today's NHL.

Just my opinion

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#233 jason
April 15 2013, 02:12PM
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Jason wrote:

Wow - you are a real prize. I would pay good money for you to say that to Lowe's face and watch him knock your teeth out the back of your skull.

You are such a loser it's pathetic.

shut up you chirpy little boy, if i want any lip from you i'll unzip my fly! i stand by my statement because it's true, and would have problem saying it to lowe's face or yours. piss off.

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#234 Kevin Lowe
April 15 2013, 02:17PM
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jason wrote:shut up you chirpy little boy, if i want any lip from you i'll unzip my fly! i stand by my statement because it's true, and would have problem saying it to lowe's face or yours. piss off.

You unzip your fly for little boys. Gross.There is a special place in hell for people like you.

And yes Kevin Lowe can bend time and space. I reply to what you've said jason before you say it. I am in your head right now. There's more than enough room for me and my knuckle dusters made from 5 of my stanley cup rings. And the last one on a special finger on my opposite hand. May you and I should take a walk to this barn Burke rented. We can discuss your little boy fetish, and your opinions of me.

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#235 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 15 2013, 02:17PM
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DSF wrote:

Burke.

Lowe, McTavish and Howson have already had numerous years to strut their stuff.

Changing their job titles does not change who they are or what they are capable of.

Been listening to sports radio out here on the west cost and everyone is laughing at the Oilers.

It's quite sad, actually.

I would laugh too if my team signed an albatross of a contract for a goalie. Then named him captain. Who does that?! Then lost to the Bruins.

Now they got an emotionally unstable goalie they can't trade and a team that is continuing its degression.

Funny sh*t. Huh?

Scorned women. You're right, it is sad.

What else ya got?

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#236 LOIL99
April 15 2013, 02:18PM
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Tambo made MANY mistakes. But signing Dubnyk WAS NOT one of them. He is top 10 in SV% on a bottom 10 team. Its that simple.

If you dont think he has proven he is a starting NHL goalie then you are watching the wrong sport.

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#237 chartleys
April 15 2013, 02:19PM
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morgie99 wrote:

Well said, props man! it is unreal but not surprising

what's worse is politicians abide to their wishes

It is so nuts watching money be thrown around so piss pourly managed...It would be absolutely hilarious, if the city had demanded to make them open their books prior to committing to an arena deal (rather than just bend over and let them ram give it almost as hard as they could).

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#238 The Soup Fascist
April 15 2013, 02:19PM
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bazmagoo wrote:

My concern is simply that we need the following:

- 2 bigger and better forwards - 2 bigger and better defencemen - 1 UFA goalie to push Dubnyk

That is if we want to compete. Let's say we were able to sign David Clarkson from New Jersey and Viktor Stalberg from Chicago as UFA's this summer. That would likely cost about 7.5 - 8 for the two of them. And that's IF they wanted to sign in Edmonton.

Then we need 2 solid defencemen, likely at around 7 million for two players of any significance.

Plus 1.5 million for a solid UFA backup that can push Dubby.

That puts us close to $70 million next season, or about 5.7 million over the cap which coincidentially is close to Horcoff's cap number.

One suggestion that I've read is trading Horcoff for another contract with the intention of buying out who you trade for, then resigning Horcoff to a smaller amount. I would be in favour of this, as I think Horcoff is a solid 3rd line centre. But you can't be paying your 3rd line centre $5.5 million against the cap if you intend to compete in today's NHL.

Just my opinion

No concern with improving the team. If you can get those guys great. I think Hemsky's contract gets dealt and that gives you all the room you need. If you need to whack Horcoff and his contract to improve the team - go ahead. My point is there are other more pressing issues.

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#239 morgie99
April 15 2013, 02:21PM
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Fresh Mess wrote:

So the organisation that claims it is losing money can afford to create a redundant position for an ex player to act as "a liaison" between the owner and GM? And they can afford to pay him well over a million dollars per year for this part time job?

And this organisation has no problem insulting non ticket buying fans while at the same time demanding the citizens of Edmonton, and perhaps Alberta, buy them a new building?

Unreal.

Well said, props man! it is unreal but not surprising

what's worse is politicians abide to their wishes

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#240 GVBlackhawk
April 15 2013, 02:28PM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

Certainly, I am nowhere near a capologist, but you have to think Hemsky is gone (assuming a buyer can be found) and Belanger / Eager are bought out. That leaves 19 million next year in capspace (roughly) with 8 guys to sign. If they sign Gagner next year that will be $4.5. Paajarvi will be cheap. Lots of room for UFAs, although the crop is poor and I am not sure I would go crazy next year on UFAs.

Maybe, it becomes an issue in 14-15 as RNH, Petry and Schultz are due, but they are still RFAs and we are not sure what the cap is going to be.

If you have concerns, let me know what they are. If you are saying we are getting a Weber - zero chance by the way -, then yeah we might need to look at buying out Horcoff. Otherwise, I dont think letting the bad contract play out, ties your hands. What player do you want to sign next year that the Oilers cannot afford?

I can definitely see Belanger getting one of the compliance buyouts. Eager can be buried in the minors next year and only $200K of his $1.1M will count towards the cap.

They will likely save one compliance buyout for the following summer to use on Horcoff, if they can't trade him.

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#241 etownman
April 15 2013, 02:32PM
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Dave Lumley wrote:

Why in the world wasn't he doing his job over the last year painting Tambellini a picture of just what that line up should look like? Why, why, why?

Where's the integrity?

This is probably part of the reasoning behind the firing, who knows!

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#242 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 15 2013, 02:32PM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

I can definitely see Belanger getting one of the compliance buyouts. Eager can be buried in the minors next year and only $200K of his $1.1M will count towards the cap.

They will likely save one compliance buyout for the following summer to use on Horcoff, if they can't trade him.

I think there's some merit there. I've thought the same about Horcoff. Not sure they would need to buy out Belanger. If Hemsky stays then maybe they do.

I think Gagner will be the big question mark going into the off-season. He's a tough player to like or dislike and the money may play a big factor in his status going forward.

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#243 Team Seguin
April 15 2013, 02:39PM
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Everyone jumps on Tambi now, but the truth is he didn't do anything that we didn't cheer for at the time.

We wanted Smytty back, We thought Belanger EAger and Hordi were good 4th line acquisitions, we didn't want him to trade Whitney, etc. Did we want him to trade Gags and MP last year before they had a good season?

I liked his patience. I think it was appropriate for the early stages of a rebuild. Just like slightly more major moves are appropriate for now.

Hindsight.

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#244 positivebrontefan
April 15 2013, 03:03PM
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Well it is just in the last couple of years that I can actually say that I have been able to afford tickets. Had Kevin Lowe said that to the Oilers fans that can't afford tickets I would have never bought them in the first place. What an arrogant ass. What about the thousands that are on a waiting list for tickets you dickhead. I have no use for him after this.

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#246 The Soup Fascist
April 15 2013, 03:22PM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

I can definitely see Belanger getting one of the compliance buyouts. Eager can be buried in the minors next year and only $200K of his $1.1M will count towards the cap.

They will likely save one compliance buyout for the following summer to use on Horcoff, if they can't trade him.

You are correct. Eager would be a waste of a buyout.

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#247 The Worrier
April 15 2013, 03:28PM
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Check this out:

Ed Hervey former EDMONTON Eskimos now EDMONTON Eskimos GM.

Craig MacTavish former EDMONTON Oiler now EDMONTON Oilers GM.

Guys if you look really really closely you can see a pattern.

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#248 Hemipower
April 15 2013, 03:57PM
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michael wrote:

To all the season tickets holder who are angry at Lowe please give up your seats. Don't renew. It will help me move up on the list and I'll be laughing my ass off when I am sitting in my seat in new Rexall and watching Hall et al rip this league to shreds. Stay home please. Keep playing the KLOWE quote over and over till you give up your seats. Because you all know that its his fault. Everything. He is the puppet master. He is the Dark Lord. He influences how the players play on the ice with his mind manipulation. It his fault that HALL,Nuge and Ebs have not scored in 5 games. It his fault that the gold price going down 148 bucks today is a KLOWE plot. Gregor's hair style is KLOWE plot to get everyone to use more Rogaine. Its all his fault. Where are the conspiracy theorist today when we need a good laugh.

Thank you - it's nice to know there are others.

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#249 Walter Sobchak
April 15 2013, 04:03PM
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I just go back to what Burke said years ago.

I'm paraphrasing here.

A panic move made by a GM who's run his team into the ground.

This is what happened today, a panic move by a paniced guy. Yet on all the interviews you hear the same rhetoric spewing from Tambellin as you do Howson.

I have zero doubt these ass clowns will move a valuable youth for some coke machine JFJ type player.

This should have been a double fire day.

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#250 Harlie
April 15 2013, 04:10PM
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@DSF

Don't laugh too hard Vancouver, remember where we got Tambellini from after all...

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