Edmonton OilersDownload App

Edmonton Oilers: Implications of the Tom Renney Coaching Change

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 15:  Head coach Tom Renney of the Edmonton Oilers watches from the bench during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on December 15, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Oilers 4-2.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Joseph TrentonAnalyst IIIDecember 22, 2016

On Thursday evening, the Edmonton Oilers general manager Steve Tambellini came out to say that the Oilers organization had decided not to sign head coach Tom Renney to another contract. His current contract is expiring, and the team will be looking at a different coaching candidate this summer, just like the Montréal Canadiens.

This is interesting timing, but it makes a lot of sense for Edmonton. First of all, the Oilers are competing with Montréal, Calgary, Washington, and potentially Vancouver if they decide to let Alain Vigneault go. Since multiple teams are looking for a new head coach, it is important for the Edmonton Oilers to act quickly and not miss out on a potential candidate.

Steve Tambellini cited the reason for dismissal is due to the fact that the Oilers need to be headed in a different direction as an organization now. He said the team needs to "raise the compete level and compete for the Stanley Cup playoffs next year".

Tambellini also felt that, for some reason, his veteran players did not respond well enough. Specifically, Ales Hemsky, Shawn Horcoff and Eric Belanger had dismal seasons for the Oilers. Hemsky scored 10 goals and 26 assists in 69 games he played. Horcoff wasn't much better, scoring 13 goals, 21 assists in 82 games. Lastly, Eric Belanger, who was supposedly brought in to provide veteran depth and versatility on the Oilers scoring lines, put up only four goals and 12 assists on the season.

In salary, the Oilers committed $6.5 million on Horcoff, $5.0 million on Hemsky, and $2.0 million on Belanger. A total of $13.5 million on three veteran players, and they have not met expectations.

Finally, the potential coaching candidates the Oilers could be interviewing over the next few week include:

Former Canucks coach Marc Crawford, who has spent years in the Vancouver organization with Steve Tambellini.

Former Flames coach Brent Sutter, who has plenty of experience maximizing the performances from young players at the World Junior stage, and proved that he can be a good coach at the NHL level.

Current Quad City Mallards coach and GM David Bell. He had been successful as an assistant coach with the Barrie Colts before joining the Oilers organization. Tambellini may look from within, and Bell would be the front and center as a potential candidate to be the next head coach for the NHL team.

Despite the fact that Tambellini spoke to the media saying the process of finding a coach is not urgent, it is a reality that the teams will see a domino effect when a team officially announce a signing of a coach, and that other teams will also learn who's the next guy on their candidate list they wish to hire.

For now, Edmonton fans have another side of the story to be excited about—the Oilers offseason. One that should come as a surprise to nobody that the team will be busy making headlines throughout the summer.

This is Joseph Trenton reporting on the Edmonton Oilers.

 

Other recent articles on the NHL offseason:

Where can I comment?

Stay on your game

Latest news, insights, and forecasts on your teams across leagues.

Choose Teams
Get it on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Real-time news for your teams right on your mobile device.

Download
Copyright © 2017 Bleacher Report, Inc. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved. BleacherReport.com is part of Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network, part of the Turner Sports and Entertainment Network. Certain photos copyright © 2017 Getty Images. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of Getty Images is strictly prohibited. AdChoices