The Oilers didn’t practice or have a media availability today, prompting much speculation around the hockey world that the organization is pondering a move.
Firing the coach or Kevin Lowe resigning were the two most common theories floating around the twitterverse.
Will it happen?
Based on conversations I’ve had with people in the organization I’d be surprised a coaching change happens today or before Sunday. Craig MacTavish recognizes he handcuffed his coach by giving only two NHL centres, a suspect D corps and two unproven starting goalies.
At the same time it would be misleading to suggest the organization is 100% happy with the job Eakins has done. He, like the players, needs to be better. I don’t see a move happening today, but I sense the leash is getting shorter by the day.
As for Lowe resigning, that move would appease the masses, but I don’t see Daryl Katz giving in to public pressure. I could be wrong, but if, I repeat if, Lowe steps away from the organization I believe it would happen in the off-season not during the year.
If Lowe was to step down, who replaces him?
Bob Nicholson hired guys to be the GM, but he was not the decision maker on hockey moves when he was with Hockey Canada. He was in charge of growing the brand, and he did an outstanding job.
Maybe the Oilers wouldn’t replace Lowe. Very few teams have Presidents and General Managers, so they could just expand Nicholson’s portfolio a bit.
I know that MacTavish is a strong believer in Eakins, but if the losing continues he might have to end that relationship sooner than he wanted to. He does not want the coach to look like a scapegoat, but if this turns into an 17 or 18 game losing streak, or the Oiler win 2 of 25, he might have to abandon his original plan.
If he does relieve Eakins of his duties before the end of the season, I strongly hope he just promotes Ramsay and then in the spring/summer conducts a proper search for a head coach. They need to interview multiple people and glean as much information from them about the players on the team.
I don’t expect a major announcement today, but the conversations within the organization were much different than they were at the start of the season. They are discussing many options and what is best way to fix the numerous problems that exist throughout the organization.
They did not expect the season to derail as quickly, or as ugly as it has. Things can change quickly, especially with 11 consecutive losses, so stay tuned.
- I will give the Oilers credit for their effort last night. The Jets came at them hard. They hammered the Oilers, but Edmonton didn’t fold their tent. In fact, they controlled the second half of the game, and could have won.
- It is easy to look at the wrong plays they made that led to Winnipeg goals. David Perron made an awful pinch on the first goal, and Justin Schultz was way too soft on Evander Kane on the winning goal, but what about the forwards not scoring?
- Jordan Eberle had two grade “A” chances in the third period but couldn’t finish. We critique goalies when they don’t make saves, or the defence when they make a wrong read. For me, when you are a scorer and you are in a scoring lane you need to finish. That is your job. Eberle needed to bury one of those chances.
- Nail Yakupov could have put the game away. It was 2-1, Eberle made a nice play in the D zone to create a turnover, moved the puck to Draisaitl and the rookie made a stellar pass right on Yakupov’s tape, but he didn’t finish. I’m sorry, that is unacceptable. Players need to do their job and Yakupov and Eberle didn’t put the game away.
- Daniel Alfredsson will retire as an Ottawa Senator today. I wonder how much he regrets leaving how he did, not calling Brian Murray to tell him, to go to Detroit. Was it worth it? As he returns to Ottawa, Marty Brodeur will make his debut with the Blues. Will he have more success than Alfie did in Detroit?
- Former Calgary Flames GM, and current Executive Director of community Hockey Development for the Tampa Bay Lightning, Jay Feaster, took to twitter last night to express his hatred for the Oilers, or moreso, his disdain for those saying the Oilers would be better than the Flames. Seems like an odd thing for him to still be mad about. I’d be more upset I lost my job and couldn’t get my team into the playoffs.
— Jay Feaster (@therealjfeaster) December 4, 2014
DAY 3…MONTH OF GIVING…
Yesterday we raised a whopping $15,000 for Santas Anonymous and the Christmas Bureau with our dinner package at Vons. Awesome.
- A $1,000 shopping spree at Derk’s Mens Wear
- One Derk’s Black Label Suit.
- $300 in tailoring to help with your new wardrobe.
- In store consultation with Sterling Derk to ensure you fill out your wardrobe properly.
Thanks in advance. All proceeds go towards Christmas Bureau.
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