Speculation: Gretzky already told he’s out of the running for GM?

Our very own Dusty Nielson, star of the radio smash hit The Nielson Show on TSN 1260, has been told by a pair of sources he trusts that the Edmonton Oilers have already informed Keith Gretzky that he is not in line for the General Manager position. Is there something there? Let’s take a look.

Now, before we get too far into this thing, I need to make sure that everyone is on the same page in knowing that this is just a rumour at this point. Dusty readily admits in the tweet that this is something that he’s heard from a couple of different people and that there is plenty of room for things to change, but after texting back-and-forth with him over the last couple of minutes, I can’t help but feel like there could be some legs here. In fact, Nielson told me that he actually started hearing rumblings of this decision almost two weeks ago but it wasn’t until he got it for a second time that he decided to put something out there. Dusty isn’t a guy that will make this kind of thing up and I believe him when he tells me stuff, so I’m very intrigued to see how this plays out.

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What I can’t wrap my head around, though, is if this is actually true and the Oilers have told Kretzky that he’s not going to be the man, then why have they been parading him around in front of the media over the last week? He did the Nicholson presser on Monday and the draft lottery last night, so what gives? Are they teasing us? Bobbing while we’re weaving? Why would they make the man sit in front of the media and answer questions about the GM position that he wants if he already knows that he has no shot at the position? I mean, this is the Oilers we’re talking about so maybe this is a little bit of trickery that’s meant to throw us off the scent? Maybe?

Considering the job that Kretzky has done on the amateur side of the organization, I can understand that the team holds him in high regard and maybe standing in front of the media is part of his own internal job interview. Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve heard that the Oilers have a policy where they will always grant a job interview to anyone in the organization that applies for a position and maybe this is part of Keith’s sitdown with the team. Admittedly, I’m 100%  guessing on that last point but it does make sense given the policy I was told they have in place.

Dusty continued his thoughts with a second tweet…

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To me, if these sources are right and the Oilers are in line to bring in some new blood then this is great news for everyone that cheers for this franchise… maybe. Outside of a couple of people that have already stated that Kretzky should just be given the job, I think most folks fear that hiring him without performing a thorough search would be another strange decision by an organization that desperately needs to get this one right. That said, I’m certainly open to the possibility that Keith Gretzky could, in fact, be the man for the job, but I have a real hard time believing that to be true before other candidates have been interviewed or given the chance to make their pitch. Even McDonalds interviews more than one person when they’re looking for new cashiers, ya know?

All I know for sure is that this GM hunt just took a turn and I’m very excited to see how this plays out.

Source: Dustin Nielson, TSN 1260, 4/9/2019 – 2:08 pm MT