Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
Kris Knoblauch talks about his time coaching the Edmonton Oilers
1 month ago
Kris Knoblauch recently had an interview with Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli about his time coaching the Edmonton Oilers. Let’s jump into some interesting tidbits from the one-on-one…
Knoblauch is getting more comfortable with the team:
When the Oilers fired Jay Woodcroft and hired Knoblauch, the latter had two seasons under his belt on an NHL bench as an assistant. He had spent the prior six seasons as the head coach of the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League and was with the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League before that.
It’s been five weeks since landing in Edmonton, and Knoblauch said: “The reason I’m getting more comfortable is because I’m getting to know my team, my coaching staff, and more importantly, getting to know my players and what they provide and what they need.”
Since taking over as the Oilers head coach, Knoblauch has a 10-6-0 record, including an eight-game winning streak and two three-game losing streaks.
Oilers had gotten away from their identity:
Seravalli asked about the highs and the lows the Oilers have experienced since the Knoblauch hiring, and the head coach noted that it’s just about doing the little things right. “When we were on our eight game win streak, we were just doing the little things right”, he continued. Knoblauch also added that when the Oilers get away from it, that’s when they start to run into trouble.
Edmonton’s coach also stated that “the team has gotten away from its identity.” At one point, Knoblauch also note that the Oilers will have to up their work ethic if they’re going to climb up the Western Conference standings and into a favourable playoff position come spring. The team has played well for stretches but they continue to fall back into losing habits.
Connor Brown being a healthy scratch is just a reset:
Per Seravalli himself, Connor Brown appears to be a healthy scratch for Thursday’s game. He asked Knoblauch about this, to which the head coach responded:
“Brown is a tremendous hockey player. He’s been doing a lot of good things, and usually when a player gets pulled out, it means he hasn’t been playing well, he hasn’t been doing anything right, but that’s just not the case. There’s been a lot of positive things with him, it’s been hard, him coming back from his injury from last year, and him having a little setback with his different injury [this season], he’s been playing much better. With the length of the season [the healthy scratch] is just a reset for him.”
At this point, it wouldn’t make much sense to waive Brown, as his $3.225 million bonus will count towards next season’s cap hit. At this point, you have to hope he can be a productive middle-six forward as he continues to work himself back from a knee injury in 2022-23.
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