Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli Reportedly Fired After 3-Plus Seasons with Team

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJanuary 23, 2019

LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 20:  General manager Peter Chiarelli of the Edmonton Oilers is interviewed during media availability for the 2017 NHL Awards at Encore Las Vegas on June 20, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Edmonton Oilers fired Peter Chiarelli on Wednesday in the midst of his fourth season as the team's general manager, according to TSN's Ryan Rishaug.

Edmonton has 49 points this season via a 23-24-3 record, which leaves the team three points out of a wild-card spot in the Western Conference.

If the Oilers fail to reach the playoffs, it would mark the 12th time in 13 seasons that they have fallen short of the postseason.

The 54-year-old Chiarelli previously served as the Boston Bruins GM for nearly nine years and led them to a Stanley Cup win in 2011.

Days after getting fired by the Bruins in 2015, Chiarelli was hired by an Oilers team that hadn't reached the playoffs since making it to the Stanley Cup Final in 2006.

The Oilers made slight improvements under Chiarelli in his first season before registering 103 points in 2016-17 to qualify for the postseason.

Edmonton beat the San Jose Sharks in the first round of the playoffs before falling to the Anaheim Ducks in seven games in the second round.

Success was short-lived for the Oilers, as they dropped to 78 points in 2017-18 because of an inability to surround star forwards Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl with a strong supporting cast.

Edmonton also has a suspect defensive corps and goaltending situation.

While Chiarelli did make the slam-dunk selection of McDavid with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft, he made some questionable decisions as well.

Chiarelli traded forward Taylor Hall to the New Jersey Devils for defenseman Adam Larsson, and Hall went on to win the Hart Memorial Trophy as NHL MVP last season.

He also signed forward Milan Lucic to a seven-year, $42 million contract. After recording 50 points in his first season with the Oilers, Lucic had just 34 last season and has only 12 points through 50 games this term.

Chiarelli's first order of business in Edmonton was hiring Todd McLellan as head coach, but he was fired this season and replaced by Ken Hitchcock.

While things haven't gone according to plan in Edmonton during the McDavid era, the Oilers are still in the thick of the playoff race, and they have arguably the best player in the world on their side.

With a few tweaks heading toward the trade deadline, the Oilers have enough talent to reach the playoffs and make some noise.

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