Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A coaching decision is made and wow, what a deal!

There’s a lot to chew on after today, and there’s a lot of Oiler fans that more than likely feel the same way.

And so it begins.

Hiring Pat Quinn as head coach is a step in the right direction for all the right reasons. The World Junior Hockey Tournament this year proved he can lead a team with young players and he has enough experience to get job done in making sure his veteran players are at the top of their game, no matter what the score is.

Quinn, who began his hockey career during the late 1960s as a junior in Edmonton, demands a sense of respect in the dressing room and he gets it with every team he has coached.

When he calls the shots, the players will listen — something that didn’t happen this season under Craig MacTavish all because players like Dustin Penner and Ales Hemsky gave up on him.

There has never been a season where a captain has called so many player-only meetings until now, but with this shocking announcement, that’s now all in the past.

However, with a guy like Quinn, who is desperately wanting to win a Stanley Cup before he retires, he will change a player’s work ethic.

And while Quinn demands respect and enforces work ethic, he will get the help from another great hire — Tom Renney.

Renney is a technical coach, an Xs and Os bench boss who spends a lot of time with his key players to set them straight, just ask Sean Avery this season.

The New York Rangers never should have fired him in the first place, but he’s decided to take up an assistant position with the Oilers for at least a few seasons before Quinn retires. You would have to be a pretty humble guy to do something like that.

Overall, it’s obviously a one-two coaching punch for the Oil, but a big move was promoting Kelly Buchburger as an assistant. Bucky is respected around the league for working with young and talented players.

Charlie Huddy and Bill Moores are out as assistant coaches and that shouldn’t be surprise considering how awful the Oilers were on the powerplay and the penalty kill.

But GM Steve Tambellini has said the two could be offered position within the organization, possibly as scouts.

When it’s all said and done, Tambellini has assembled a massive coaching staff and he’s already proved that he alone calls the shots — not Kevin Lowe.

Now he has to focus on the draft and free-agency, but with the revamped coaching staff, don’t expect to see star players coming to Edmonton in July.

Tambellini told the Oil Patch that it will nearly be status quo on that front, and there will be more details about it in this blog tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Pat Quinn named Oilers head coach

Here's the skinny! The Oilers have hired Pat Quinn as head coach while Tom Renney are Kelly Buchburger are hired as assistants. Charlie Huddy and Bill Moores are out of the coaching staff.

Stay tuned later tonight on what the GM Steve Tambellini said and it may shock you!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Don't spill the Kool-Aid

“Oh yeah!”

A blogger has crashed through a wall and spilled the Kool-Aid by creating an Internet firestorm all over the fact that he’s angry about whether or not TSN’s Darren Dreger pulls trade rumours out of his “ass.”

The site, which is obviously by an L.A. Kings fan, believes Dreger was making things up when he reported that the Montreal Canadians and the his Kings are contenders for Vincent Lecavalier.

The blogger, who identifies himself as “Bozo the Blogger” and uses a Kool-Aid profile pic, verbally contradicts everything that Dregs says, even the suggestion that the Kings are interested in shipping defenseman Jack Johnson for the superstar forward.

I don’t even understand why he wrote it and it didn’t make a lot of sense.

Rumours are rumours, but they always make headlines.

Now go and drink your Kool-Aid.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Forget Ales, trade Horcoff!

Trade Ales Hemsky? Fuggetaboutit.

Trade Shawn Horcoff, a player set to make an astounding $6.5 million this season? Now you’re talking.

But any owner with a strong business sense would ignore any pitch from Steve Tambellini to ditch the Oilers top-line forward and his big contract.

That is, unless you’re in Tampa Bay where there are two financially-strapped owners dealing with a much larger contract and they need to do it in an awful hurry if they don’t find any more investors.

OK Hockey, led by businessmen Oren Koules and Len Barrie, bought the Lightning back in June for $206 million and $100 million of that cash was backed by the previous owner, Palace Sports Entertainment and Galatioto Sports Partners.

And since the deal, there’s been a lot of talk that things are not going well in the Bay.

For starters, the club, allegedly, began charging its workers to park at the St. Pete Times Forum and 30 employees were let go over a “restructuring process,” reports the Tampa Bay Tribune.

The team also owes at least more than $210,000 in realty taxes over a parking lot that was due since April 1, and the financial problems have created a ton of rumours, especially around the team’s star forward, Vinny Lecavalier.

Lecavalier will make $10 million for the next seven years as part of his $85 million contract extension that will kick in after July 1, complete with a no trade clause.

Now we all heard what Tambellini said about making drastic changes in the dressing room and about holding players accountable as he made his announcement about losing Craig MacTavish as head coach.

Why not make a statement by getting rid of your heart-and-soul player for a superstar, or at least just make an attempt at the NHL Draft? That’s roughly the same time after Tambellini hires a head coach.

Horcoff’s leadership could be an attractive deal in Tampa Bay where leadership is needed in that dressing room, and it could payoff for the forward who could make a difference in a new city. That’s especially after a mediocre season in Edmonton.

Lecavalier, who has been rumoured to arrive in Edmonton before, would add a lot to an offence that hasn’t existed in three seasons.

It’s obvious he would make Hemsky a better player, possibly a superstar.