MacT going nowhere

mact

They say timing is everything, and the timing for Darryl Katz to declare his coach is safe is very puzzling.

Prior to the Oilers game tonight against San Jose, Katz sent a text to the pre-game host on Oilers radio, Bob Stauffer, that said basically “MacTavish is going nowhere.”

Not earth shattering news to anyone that the owner has the back of his coach, but why he felt the need to say it publicly is perplexing.

The pulse-o-meter in the OilersNation reads that the fan’s anger, disappointment and frustration are at an all-time high. The Oilers are on the verge of missing the playoffs for the third straight year, all with MacTavish behind the bench. They are coming off another typical loss, which included a 15-minute lapse that cost them the game, not to mention an illegal stick call that backfired in MacTavish’s face.

Yesterday, MacTavish stated that even he would understand if his job security was wavering.

“I’ve been here for a number of years and I’ve had terrific support from virtually everybody and if I’ve got less now than before, it’s a hazard of the profession. You have fixed time to deliver the goods. I’m not forecasting anything, but you’re always evaluated on how many games you win. We’ve got ourselves in a position where we should be better.”

Did Katz send out the message because he wanted to protect his coach? Was there a need with five games to go in another disappointing season to create more friction between the team and their fans?

The team is underachieving, despite a high payroll and almost no financial flexibility in the future. Season number one as the new owner has not gone the way Katz or anyone in the Oiler organization hoped it would.

His text message just fuels the fire that new GM, Steve Tambellini, doesn’t have much say in how the organization is run. And there is no evidence that shows Tambellini has the ability to be a true GM under this regime.

Or maybe Katz just gave his coach the proverbial kiss of death. He wouldn’t be the first owner or GM to come out and proclaim the coach’s job was save, only to give him a pink slip a month later.

I’ve stated for months that MacTavish won’t be fired, but that he would resign when he felt he wasn’t benefiting the team. After the loss to the Ducks, you got the feeling that MacTavish was begining to wonder if his departure behind the bench might be best for the team.

If the coach has the slightest tinge of doubt, why wouldn’t the owner? If Katz doesn’t realize his team needs changes on and off the ice this summer, you wonder if the fans frustration starts to appear in the form of empty seats next season.

The Oilers haven’t been able to realize what time to show up on many nights and today their owner followed suite with some bad timing of his own.

  • caloilfan

    Made the long trip from Calgary for the game last night with my 6 year old in tow…her first Oilers game, which made the night fun.

    Listening to Lowe's presser last night was a big of a piss off – he's surprized that people are talking about the coach when the team is in the thick of the stretch drive? Come on Kev, pull your head out of your ass. The team has been horribly inconsistant all year, has been brutal down the stretch, can't win a game at home, and you expect anything else from the most passionate, and dedicated fans in the league?

    I'd just like to see a little reality coming from the front office – I understand backing a friend or whatever, but if your loyalty to someone completely obliterates your ability to see the realities of a situation, maybe you shouldn't hire friends.

    Other than that, where has last night's game been all year? Sure there were lapses, Gilbert is still horribly soft, we skated the puck into the offensive zone only to turn it over about fifty time, but there was some passion, there was 'jam', there was effort. Why does this show up in game 78 rather than game 28?

  • FlamesFan

    Spliff wrote:

    I’ve been a fan for over 30 years, since the Rusty Patnaude/Bill Flett days and all I can do is shake my head in disbelief. Edmonton is, and always will be, a no-nonsense blue collar town that doesn’t need rich hockey team owners telling average folks (who pay top dollar for Oilers tickets) how to think. Isn’t this a democracy? I don’t like watching the Oil get speedbagged on home ice all year and then being told we can’t complain, to cheer louder and be positive. How many coaches have perennial playoff teams like New Jersey and Detroit had over the past 10 years? Why did Kevin Lowe get to be GM for all those years of mediocrity ? Is all it takes to become a powerful executive on an NHL team a successful hockey career as a fifth defenceman, lucky enough to have played with some true hockey greats? Unbelievable. Kevin Lowe needs to take a bullet for this team instead of deriding fans and dodging questions. Where is the leadership? Selling off Gretz and Messier, the Corson years, the Pronger fiasco, the Burke crap (who’s the moron now?) and now the organization telling fans to cheer and not complain after 3 years of no playoffs? I bought a little oilers shirt for my 1 year old son but now when I don’t want him wearing it anymore.

    Spliff , you were quoted as saying " Edmonton is, and always will be, a no-nonsense blue collar town that doesn’t need rich hockey team owners telling average folks (who pay top dollar for Oilers tickets) how to think. Isn’t this a democracy?"

    Well Sir , You have to understand if you do not like it watch it on tv if you think the oilers are not worth the tickets. Im not even a oilers fan , Im actually a flames fan. But i do attend about 10 home games for the oilers because i love hockey and don't care if i shell out couple hundred a game for tickets heck if i could get season tickets i would buy them . Just like any other business this is sport , Its called Sports Entertainment. If you do not feel like your entertainment value then please do not watch or go to the games. As for rich hockey team owners they can do whatever they like especially in canadian markets and big U.S ones. For every person who doesn't renew a season ticket there are 10 more ready to buy regardless of win /loss records. Heck Mr.Katz can move the damn team if he wanted too and hire his grandma as Head coach it doesn't matter what fans think. You do not like people running your own business or getting into it so im sure team owners dont like it either. If anyone needs a talking to here is Kevin lowe he has continued on with bad judgements and signings ,not mac T. The poor guy is only working with what he is given. Just like when you go to work , for example if your a mechanic and you don't got a wrench it's going to be mighty hard to turn that nut by hand.But you will try with all your will power to get it off. But sometimes it just doesn't work. (mAc T to is working with the tools he is given . Kevin Lowe Seized everything.

  • Chaz

    So the Oil brass want us to talk about something besides Mac T hey? Here are some topics….

    -For a four million dollar player, why can't Gilbert make a tape to tape pass out of his own zone and why is he softer than the Pilsberry dough boy?
    -Why is the organization surprised by their own fans booing when they have the 4th worst home record in the league?
    -Why will Horcs make as much as Datsyuk next year?
    -Was wasn't the obvious need for a faceoff specialist adressed all year?
    -Why have the special teams blown goats all year? (I tried to think of a nicer way to phrase that, but I couldn't)
    -Why is the ice in Rexall so brutal pucks hop over the sticks of our pointmen in the 3rd period every night?
    -How did that 3 headed goalie monster work out for you this year?

    ….yeah, I can see why they wouldn't want to talk about the coaching situation with all of these other great topics to hash out….(What's that sacrasm button again? Oh yeah: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~!!!!!)

  • Jack "FMNF" Bauer

    This sport needs rich business owners who are fiancially stable to run this stuff.

    Look at Phoenix when you have struggling business owners running a team. Or look at the Oilers in the mid 90's when we almost lost this team.

  • Spliff

    Flames Fan wrote:
    Spliff , you were quoted as saying ” Edmonton is, and always will be, a no-nonsense blue collar town that doesn’t need rich hockey team owners telling average folks (who pay top dollar for Oilers tickets) how to think. Isn’t this a democracy?”

    Well Sir , You have to understand if you do not like it watch it on tv if you think the oilers are not worth the tickets. Im not even a oilers fan , Im actually a flames fan. But i do attend about 10 home games for the oilers because i love hockey and don’t care if i shell out couple hundred a game for tickets heck if i could get season tickets i would buy them . Just like any other business this is sport , Its called Sports Entertainment. If you do not feel like your entertainment value then please do not watch or go to the games.

    Thats ridiculous. I like Billy Bob Thornton movies but when I saw "Astronaut Farmer" or whatever it was called I left the theatre complaining. Are you saying that if we don't like a product we should stop buying it? Should I stop going to movies when I see a bad movie? Weak argument dude.

  • FlamesFan

    @ Spliff:

    Spliffy , well in most cases when you do not like a product you either bring it back or stop buying it. In your case billy bob thorton movies ok you like him as an actor , you saw a movie of his you didn't like. Did you read the previews before you went and saw it ? I will not go sometimes if it got bad reviews ill wait until dvd comes out. Just like hockey if the oilers are on a 10 game losing streak do you still wanna see them go play? Probably not so that is my point , do not like something then do not buy it.