It sounds like the Oilers will make an announcement regarding Steve Tambellini’s future with the Oilers after the World Championships. Tambellini will get an extension, I’m not sure how long, but he’ll be the guy in charge. This isn’t a surprise to anyone who has been following the team, but rumblings seem to be pointing to an announcement sometime during the week after Victoria Day.
The actions of the Oilers make it seem like he’s known he’d be the guy moving forward for months, but an official announcement will finally happen.
Once it does, Tambellini has lots of work to do.
By my rough calculations Tambellini has between 25-30 contracts to sign. He needs to sign players, scouts, both pro and amateur, training staff and of course decide on the fate of the coaches. Rick Olczyk will help facilitate some of these deals, but Tambellini will have lots on his plate once the Oilers make his extension official.
The Oilers currently have 31 players under contract for next season.
Horcoff, Hemsky, Hall, Eberle, RNH, Jones, Eager, Belanger, Whitney, Smid, Schultz, Potter, Sutton and Khabibulin are on one-way deals. Technically Hall, Eberle and RNH are on two-ways and could go to minors, but that won’t happen.
Paajarvi, Lander, Hartikainen, Pitlick, Hamilton, Cornet, Tyrvainen, House, Arcobello, Abney, Martindale, Pelss, Teubert, Marincin, Bunz and Roy all have two-way deals for next season.
Tambellini will need to make decisions on RFA/UFAs like Dubnyk, Smyth, Petry, Gagner, Peckham, Petrell, Alex Plante and Taylor Chorney.
I’d be stunned if they qualify Cam Barker, I doubt they re-sign Darcy Hordichuk while Linus Omark will most likely be dealt.
I wonder if this is how Tom Renney feels. I can’t recall the last time a coach sat in limbo this long awaiting his fate. I’m sure it has happened, but I sure don’t like the optics.
It’s been over a month since the Oilers cleaned out their dressing room and went their separate ways. We haven’t heard much on the coaching front since, but earlier this a week a source told me Renney likely isn’t coming back. I think most of us suspected as much, but it’s the first time I’ve been able to get any sort of answer on the direction the Oilers are heading in.
I was also told that it seems more likely by the day that Brent Sutter is at the top of the list to replace Renney. I couldn’t get any confirmation that he was guaranteed to get the job, but I got the sense that is the direction they are leaning. I also couldn’t get confirmation when this announcement would take place.
I’ve said for weeks that during Tambellini’s extension presser, that at the very least he will announce Renney’s fate one way or the other. It would look awful, and very disrespectful, if they announced Renney wasn’t returning, and then introduced the new coach moments later. Maybe they’ve already told Renney he isn’t returning, but I highly doubt it, since that would have leaked out somewhere. If Renney knew he wasn’t coming back, I’m sure he’d let people in the hockey world know so he could start looking for another job.
That is what I find concerning about the delayed announcement. By tomorrow we will be down to four teams remaining in the quest for the Cup, and the other 26 will be formulating plans and making calls regarding their coaching staffs for next season. If Renney isn’t returning, then they need to give him an opportunity to apply for other jobs as soon as possible.
After my conversation this week regarding Renney and Sutter, you have to wonder where that leaves the rest of the coaches. I doubt Krueger sticks around with a new regime. I think Smith has a good chance to stick, while Buchberger has been here under MacTavish, Quinn and Renney. Will he last through four different head coaches?
- Kevin Lowe has had a chance to see Ryan Murray up close at the World Championships, and he’s been very impressed. Why wouldn’t he, the kid can play, but is he the best player in the draft? No one knows for sure, but every independant scouting bureau has Nail Yakupov listed at #1. The risk in taking a D-man first overall is there’s a good chance he won’t be the best player long-term. History shows the best D-man is rarely the first one drafted. If the Oilers really want to take a D-man, and I understand that thinking, then they should trade down. I wouldn’t take a D-man first overall, regardless of which one they like the best. Yakupov is the consensus #1, so either take him or trade down.
- Win or lose, I think the Rangers will acquire Rick Nash this summer. They don’t have enough skilled forwards to compete v. Pittsburgh or Philly long-term.
- Sven Bartschi is a very good young player, and he’ll play in Calgary next year, but he’s not a miracle worker. During last night’s WHL game, the Shaw broadcast crew’s suggestion that if he was in Calgary all year they would have made playoffs were a massive stretch. The kid is good, but he’s not God. He couldn’t have created a miracle.
- It would be nice if Sportsnet or TSN picked up some of the AHL games between Toronto and OKC. The Barons are one win away from facing the Marlies in the 3rd round of the AHL playoffs. It would be great for fans in Toronto and Edmonton to see their top prospects playing playoff games, not to mention a nice reward for two fan bases who haven’t witnessed playoffs since 2004 and 2006.
ULTIMATE SPORTS FAN PACKAGE
Thanks for the awesome response. We are 48% sold out in two days.
I am riding in the 190km MS Bike Tour on June 09th and 10th, and I’ve come up with a pretty good package for the diehard sports fan. Click here and donate $100 and you will get one entry into the draw. If you donate $200 you get two entries and so on.
We only take 100 entries, and we only have 52 left.
The winner will win a prize pack that includes:
- A pair of tickets to the Oilers home opener in October.
- A pair of Edmonton Eskimos season tickets.
- A signed Jordan Eberle stick.
- Pizza for a year from Boston Pizza and a special "all meat wings" package.
- A beer fridge and beer for a year from Big Rock Brewery.
- Four Edmonton Rush season tickets.
- And more surprise prizes, something involving Wanye and something with Strudwick, to come in the next few weeks.
We will add a new prize every few days leading up to the draw on June 07th. So if you want a chance to win and help End MS, get in the draw today.
Thanks for your support and helping to End MS.