GOOD DAY SUNSHINE?

Jim Matheson has an article up this morning suggesting there’s a possibility Craig MacTavish could return to the Oilers in a hockey ops advisory role.

Key elements of the story have MacTavish reporting directly to  Kevin Lowe, although we don’t know if that’s an inside scoop or thinking out loud on Matty’s part. Honestly, I’d rather have him back as coach but he’s a smart man and I believe he could help the club in the suggested capacity.

Quick–where’s Patrick Thoresen? If this story has legs, I’m a happy man. Welcome back, MacT! You won’t BELIEVE what we’ve been through!

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115 Responses to "GOOD DAY SUNSHINE?"

  1. regwald says:

    Okay, just for the record. No I don’t want him back as coach. I also struggle with the “old boys club” mentality of bringing in the past glory in spades. Just because you are an ex-Oiler doesn’t mean you know more about hockey than the rest of the league.

    That said, adding more punch to the management team can’t help. Unless of course he was brought in to just agree with KLowe … yes, men are not welcome.

    Okay, off that tangent. Have a good day.

  2. Woodguy says:

    From the article:

    Maybe I’m being led astray by the background chatter, but would it be a stretch to have MacTavish, who got his master’s degree in business from Queen’s University after leaving the coaching gig here, return to assist Kevin Lowe, the team’s president of hockey operations?

    I just checked and Toby Peterson is a free agent.

    Also,

    I’ve posted this thought occasionally and will again here:

    Darrell Katz was very good friends with a lot of the 80′s OIlers.

    He hired The Tragically Hip to play at a party he threw for Messier.

    I was told by someone who knows Mr. Katz personally that one of his primary motivations for buying the team was so that his good friends Kevin and Craig could run the NHL team unfettered by the budget of the EIG and bring hockey glory back to Edmonton.

    I believe this rumour..

    I guess Tambellini will have to be the “GM in charge of making recommendations to two guys” now.

    If Mac is back, the clock ticks on Tambellini.

    He probably ends up heading up Player Development and the AHL team.

    That’s probably a good thing.

    If Mac is back, Krueger is gone. Mac said on Stauffer’s show that he wouldn’t hire Kreuger as he thought the coaching situation in EDM needed fresh voices all around.

    I disagree with him there. Except for “Piece of furniture Bucky” all the coaches were only finishing their second year, and there was some progress in some areas.

    Mac also said he doesn’t think too much of FancyStats.

    I had hoped a little education would make him appreciate large sample sizes and how to read trends.

    Perhaps he did mostly case studies in his MBA work.

    If this rumour is true, then welcome back Mac. The IQ at Oiler HQ just went up a bunch.

  3. regwald says:

    Woodguy,

    But not common sense, new ideas or open minds ??

  4. DBO says:

    MacT is insurance against both Tambellini or the coach. Seems a bit like hedging their bets for the next year or two.

    On a different note, man I hope Tambellini gets to work already. Detroit dealt the rights to Brad Stuart to San Jose for a low prospect and conditional pick. And Justin Shultz indicated to the Ducks that he will be testing the UFA waters. Why not deal for his rights with a low end prospect and a conditional pick? Yes he may not sign, but you take a chance to convince him to come here with the Katz full court press, along with the super kids. Exclusive negotiating rights fr the next 2 weeks may be enough. maybe it’s Omark, who we will not keep.

    Do something dammit.

  5. gcw_rocks says:

    Woodguy,

    Did you actually digest the comments you brought in from the other article? If so, how the hell can you want this shmuck back? Saying the coaching situation needs fresh voices all around shows he doesn’t have a clue about the current coaching staff, and those areas of improvement brought in part by new coaching (hello Mr. Krueger). His comments about “Fancystats” shows he is still a dinosaur. Sure he would be an improvement on tambelini, but so would my 10 year old daughter. But is he the BEST candidate out there for any coaching or maangement role? No friggin’ way.

    With other more progressive options available at the GM level, and other options with better track records or better updides available at the head coaching position, I just don’t get the love for MacT.

    Sure mediocrity is better than sucking, but if that’s the best the Oilers aspire for, then bring back MacT, and those of us fans who want to cheer for a winner we need to go elsewhere.

  6. Woodguy says:

    regwald:
    Woodguy,

    But not common sense, new ideas or open minds ??

    Not sure what is not common sense?

  7. Woodguy says:

    gcw_rocks,

    I specifically stated the Krueger and Fancystat thing because I am on the other side of the argument than Mac is.

    I specifically stated the relationship thing with Katz to show why I think this is probably going to happen.

    A smarter person than Tambellini is a good thing to have “in the room”, and so on the face of it, this is an improvement over doing nothing.

    No where did I say that he would be my first choice.

    Not sure where your vitrol is coming from.

    I liked MacT as a coach more after the fact than during. Sometimes you don’t know what you have until its gone.

    If he’s back, I hope he helps the professional hockey player procurement side of the Oilers.

  8. regwald says:

    Woodguy,

    I was just meaning … that MacT wouldn’t use common sense … not related to your comment. I should have clarified. I meant MacT will not bring common sense, new ideas or an open mind to the discussions.

  9. remember reijo says:

    Liam Reddox in the top 6.

  10. Woodguy says:

    regwald:
    Woodguy,

    I was just meaning … that MacT wouldn’t use common sense … not related to your comment. I should have clarified. I meant MacT will not bring common sense, new ideas or an open mind to the discussions.

    I disagree about the common sense thing. I think he has more than most.

    All the players everyone hated him for not playing never made it with other NHL teams either, and the ones he played (i.e. Toby “The Gun” Peterson) stuck in the NHL.

    A lot of fans look at young players and see goals and assists, but don’t see all the chances given up the other way. Mac did/does and understands easing players into the NHL (except Gagner, terrible decision to keep him his 18 year old year)

    I do agree about the new ideas thing, but that’s why I wrote the Katz thing.

    Its his team. Stuff like this is to be expected.

  11. Woodguy says:

    remember reijo:
    Liam Reddox in the top 6.

    I raise you a JFJ on the first line.

    Reddox played less than a game in the top 6.

  12. sliderule says:

    I think that adding MacT would be a great move by the oil.

    The only real knock I have heard on him is giving players like Petersen and Reddox more ice time than they deserved.Both those guys were very hard workers and he was sending the message to guys like Penner that consistent hard work pays off.

    The guy is smart and what he doesn’t bring in advanced stat is more than made up in the rest of the organization.

  13. Woodguy says:

    EVERYONE,

    If you are going to start naming players who shouldn’t have received the ice time they did under Mac, please look at the roster that he had to work with and suggest who should have had the ice time.

    Its all well and good to say Reddox and Peterson, but please state who you would have played instead.

    If you say Schremp, well, I hope you get help cutting your meat.

  14. Traktor says:

    Woodguy: I raise you a JFJ on the first line.

    I raise you Smid on the 4th line.

  15. TheOtherJohn says:

    No difficulty with him being hired. Smart guy. After he left we got an idea of how little talent we had on our roster. Never go wrong adding smart guys to organization.

  16. jonrmcleod says:

    Regarding the rumors by @HockeyyInsiderr of Montreal’s offer of Subban for the #1 pick: I mentioned to someone on Twitter that this “Insider” probably doesn’t have inside information. Someone else replied saying he knows who he is and that he is a former NHLer. From the clues, I guessed he is a former Oiler living in Montreal. Not sure what to make of this. (By the way, I need more followers–@jonrmcleod. I’ll follow back.) Also, whether or not there is any truth behind this rumor, I don’t like the deal. If Montreal was to also offer their first pick, that would be somewhat enticing.

  17. Jordan says:

    WRT Toby Petersen, Liam Reddox & JFJ in the top 6…

    After watching this team for a goodly number of years, I have a different take on these decisions.

    Of course they were terrible coaching decisions. But on another level, I can’t help but wonder if in some ways those decisions weren’t in fact messages not to the players, but to management and ownership.

    In the last few years, we have seen a glut of highly skilled forwards move into the top 6. Quite honestly, there hasn’t been this much raw skill in Edmonton’s lineup since before Weight left, and there certainly hasn’t been this much potential there since the 80s. It really is a stark contrast to what we had seen Craig deal with for his decade here.

    Could we not also see playing Liam et. al in those positions as a statement that, “It doesn’t matter which of these guys we play here – they’re not top 6 players – I might as well just play a grinder who can saw off the toughts. You want me to play a skill line? Get me a skill player!”

    An interesting perspective, if nothing else – but it sure does change the context of some of his choices, if looked at in that light.

  18. LMHF#1 says:

    No No No NO NO NO!!!

    *sitting on the ground, hands on knees, rocking back and forth*

  19. Rosco11 says:

    I remember a line of Sykora – Peterson – Lupul and Sykora was the centre! Ugh, those were tough times and dark days for us and MacT I’m sure.

  20. fuzzy muppet says:

    If only they would bring Marc Antoine Pouliot back into the fold!

    I can see LT”s smile beaming from the states!

  21. bookje says:

    Woodguy:
    EVERYONE,

    If you are going to start naming players who shouldn’t have received the ice time they did under Mac, please look at the roster that he had to work with and suggest who should have had the ice time.

    Its all well and good to say Reddox and Peterson, but please state who you would have played instead.

    If you say Schremp, well, I hope you get help cutting your meat.

    Smid could have been effective if he had been given a chance as a winger, no?

  22. bookje says:

    I do have problems with guys who have hockey as their entire professional focus and who have not developed an appreciation for ‘fancystats’. I think it demonstrates a lack of intelligence.

  23. jonrmcleod says:

    bookje,

    Or maybe stubbornness and/or laziness.

  24. Traktor says:

    bookje:
    I do have problems with guys who have hockey as their entire professional focus and who have not developed an appreciation for ‘fancystats’.I think it demonstrates a lack of intelligence.

    Your post demonstrates an inflated ego that isn’t deserved.

    I think intelligence is being open to “fancystats” without accepting a poor trial version.

  25. Traktor says:

    As for MacTavish.. a wise blogger once wrote an article titled “Shallow Pools”.

  26. hunter1909 says:

    Of all the putrid, sickening thoughts right before kickoff for the England game.

    Double Whammy with Cheese, more like it.

    Shopteacher really helps erase the old boys perpetual fuckup, doesn’t he? Still, someone will be needed to slag Yakupov, or anyone else who dares stand up to this most nepotistic-to-the-point-of Egyptian Dynasty “organisations”.

  27. russ99 says:

    FancyStats don’t mean much when your defense and half your goaltending is a sieve.

    Corsi is scoring-chance based – taking both sides of the ice under account and is skewed by poor defensive play. Ditto on zone starts when you’re stuck in your zone and your offensive play is primarly cycling along the boards. When most teams are better than your team, QualComp is also skewed…

    Maybe when we get back to allowing less goals than we score, and playing a more dynamic game on offense they’ll be more useful.

  28. jonrmcleod says:

    Jeff Marek just tweeted: “Vancouver announces Craig MacTavish will leave role as coach of the Chicago Wolves (Canucks AHL affiliate) to pursue other opportunities.”

  29. Moosemess says:

    Couple interesting items of note for Oiler fans in the latest regular edition and draft preview issues of the Hockey News.

    It’s speculated that the Wild acquired Tom Gilbert to give them an additional edge in the Ryan Suter sweepstakes (former teammates at the U of Wisconsin).

    As well, Yakupov’s coach at the WJC says Nail is lacking in leadership qualities.

  30. jonrmcleod says:

    And here it is…

    “GM Steve Tambellini announces #Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the Hockey Operations Management Team as Senior VP, Hockey Operations.”

  31. LMHF#1 says:

    Woodguy:

    Its all well and good to say Reddox, but please state who you would have played instead.

    If you say Schremp, well, I hope you get help cutting your meat.

    Many would know why I usually say this, but let us add something to the mix: Schremp was statistically superior to Reddox at nearly every turn and yet did not play because of delusions about “top six, not top six, I like playing games with pegs” thinking. That was BS. If you can’t coach with hitters in the bottom of your order, you can’t coach.

  32. LMHF#1 says:

    jonrmcleod:
    And here it is…

    “GM Steve Tambellini announces #Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the Hockey Operations Management Team as Senior VP, Hockey Operations.”

    Hooray! More not knowing talent if it hit you in the head with a hammer in our ranks. Just effing great….

  33. Captain Obvious says:

    Moosemess:
    Couple interesting items of note for Oiler fans in the latest regular edition and draft preview issues of the Hockey News.

    It’s speculated that the Wild acquired Tom Gilbert to give them an additional edge in the Ryan Suter sweepstakes (former teammates at the U of Wisconsin).

    As well, Yakupov’s coach at the WJC says Nail is lacking in leadership qualities.

    The Wild acquired Tom Gilbert because he is a much, much, much, better hockey player than Nick Schultz.

  34. ed says:

    fwiw toronto sports radio reporting that MacT will join the oilers as senior vice president of hockey ops.

  35. LMHF#1 says:

    Moosemess:

    As well, Yakupov’s coach at the WJC says Nail is lacking in leadership qualities.

    Good. He won’t be distracted from his primary job of scoring 50 goals for us.

  36. Traktor says:

    jonrmcleod:
    And here it is…

    “GM Steve Tambellini announces #Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the Hockey Operations Management Team as Senior VP, Hockey Operations.”

    Congrats to MacT. One thing for sure is he bleeds the blue and copper.

  37. Traktor says:

    Captain Obvious: The Wild acquired Tom Gilbert because he is a much, much, much, better hockey player than Nick Schultz.

    No, he isn’t.

  38. Captain Obvious says:

    LMHF#1,

    Is it true that Schremp was statistically better than Reddox at every turn. For all the handwringing about Schremp his AHL record doesn’t stand out as superior. He had one good season in the AHL and it wasn’t his last one. Schremp track record isn’t anywhere as good as Omark’s, for instance.

  39. LMHF#1 says:

    Captain Obvious:
    LMHF#1,

    Is it true that Schremp was statistically better than Reddox at every turn.For all the handwringing about Schremp his AHL record doesn’t stand out as superior.He had one good season in the AHL and it wasn’t his last one.Schremp track record isn’t anywhere as good as Omark’s, for instance.

    My problem with the treatment of Schremp is entirely related to development, but that train has sailed.

    Omark appears to be just another guy we’ll be sending down the road despite usefulness and potential for more than that. I’d like to say it is the exception but we’re horrible gold miners.

  40. rich says:

    Well it does in fact appear that Matheson is still connected because Mac is back.

    And that is a good thing. Whoever said it above I think has the right long-term idea. Put Tambellini in charge of the AHL team (eventually) and move MacT (eventually) into the GM role.

    Welcome home MacT!

  41. Ducey says:

    jonrmcleod:
    And here it is…
    “GM Steve Tambellini announces #Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the Hockey Operations Management Team as Senior VP, Hockey Operations.”

    So where does this put him on the org chart? Under Tambo or above him?

    Maybe this is why it took so long to announce Tambo’s new deal. Maybe they said that “we will give you a new deal, but you have to accept MacT as an advisor”.

    I like the deal. Can’t hurt to have another smart guy in there.

    You have to think this comes right from the top, and that Katz is paying attention.

  42. Moosemess says:

    Hmm, I’m really pulling for the Oil to go with an out-of-character hc hire with Jon Cooper but it appears the old boys network is closing ranks, not pushing the envelope.

  43. thurmtim says:

    He really WILL be the Smartest Man in the Room. Our braintrust’s average IQ just went up by ten points.

    Be afraid, Harvey…. be VERY afraid.

  44. Traktor says:

    Ducey: So where does this put him on the org chart? Under Tambo or above him?

    MacT is still under under Tambellini. He is basically Edmonton’s version of Dave Nonis.

    Pretty nice gig.

  45. Ducey says:

    Moosemess:
    Hmm, I’m really pulling for the Oil to go with an out-of-character hc hire with Jon Cooper but it appears the old boys network is closing ranks, not pushing the envelope.

    I don’t get the love for Cooper. He has won a bunch lately at lower levels but what else do we know about him? Maybe he played all his AHL vets at the expense of development, or maybe he is the next Jaques Lemaire and plays an extreme defensive game. Perhaps he keeps moving because he is so hard on his players?

    He could be great, or not. People seem to know nothing about him yet would hand him the keys to a rebuild. The last super coach from the minors seems to be spinning his tires in TB.

  46. hunter1909 says:

    Schremp, Omark, Pajaarvi…

    Hall a virtual injury machine…RNH already injured twice….

    Yakupov deemed not Oiler material due probably to having a sophisticated agent…Dang! Those guys are a pain to deal with…

    Wonderful. i guess this is at least halfway towards “total fuckup move” as Shopteacher MacT returns to rub everyone who disagrees with the party line(sorry Lowetide, but from where I sit yourself, and many other old timey bloggers seem more and more like wannabe Sun columnists lately) into the dirt, LOL.

  47. bsmart says:

    Just announced MAC T new VP of Hockey ops for the edmonton oilers via tsn twitter feed.

    I don’t mind this at all, I would prefer if he were the actual GM over Tambellini.

  48. till_horcoff_is_coach says:

    From the title, I’m hoping Tambellini now gives suggestions to MacT – which could free up KL for other more important matters – like the arena, or Hockey Canada, or polishing his rings. #wouldntitbegreat

  49. rickithebear says:

    bookje: I think it demonstrates a lack of intelligence

    Have stated in the past: believe in this.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triarchic_theory_of_intelligence

    Give me an Egineer who wasa tradesman.
    this is the person who gets 10 times the work done.
    Does not have 100,000 to 2,500,000 dollar project s abandoned.
    I have seen those.

    As for MacT depends on what he is refering to “fancy stats.”

    If he is refering to Accurate measures. that a coach can make decisions on. I am all for it..

    Remeber he likely had imput into the building of 05-06.

  50. Traktor says:

    I guess this means if there is an amnesty clause in the new CBA we will not be buying out Horcoff.

    This organization is a circus lol.

  51. Henry says:

    Ducey: I don’t get the love for Cooper. He has won a bunch lately at lower levels but what else do we know about him? Maybe he played all his AHL vets at the expense of development, or maybe he is the next Jaques Lemaire and plays an extreme defensive game. Perhaps he keeps moving because he is so hard on his players?

    He could be great, or not. People seem to know nothing about him yet would hand him the keys to a rebuild. The last super coach from the minors seems to be spinning his tires in TB.

    Ducey,

    Well, at least MacT will have an informed opinion of Cooper as part of the AHL coaching fraternity.

  52. copperblueandwhite says:

    MacT is now one bounce away from the Dithers job…getting his MBA should help as well…I don’t mind this move…now let’s get some defensemen…and Latendresse if possible.

  53. slopitch says:

    jonrmcleod:
    And here it is…

    “GM Steve Tambellini announces #Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the Hockey Operations Management Team as Senior VP, Hockey Operations.”

    So does this mean the Oilers havent started their coach hiring process? Surely the Senior VP of Hockey Operations would want to get in on that process. Does this mean they can afford to make a more risky hire? Obviously the mandate is to take the best candidate but Im more curious MacTs intentions about coaching again.

    Good hire by the Oilers. I liked how he as picked up an MBA and worked in a development league for a good organization. These are all valuable experiences he has added to his resume since “leaving”.

  54. Henry says:

    MacT loved Omark, “He’s got all kinds of jam.”

  55. hunter1909 says:

    Traktor:
    I guess this means if there is an amnesty clause in the new CBA we will not be buying out Horcoff.

    Fool. Horcoff is the future head coach. Good company man.

  56. Moosemess says:

    Ducey, I think the love for Cooper comes from the fact that everywhere he goes, he wins championships. You can deride his accomplishments as being done at low levels to date, but isn’t that how a coach pays his dues? Admittedly, Cooper’s rise has been meteoric, but his track record speaks volumes. He turns around crappy teams quickly and more importantly, seems to know what it takes to get teams over the top.

    Plus he’s got a great last name for a hockey coach ; )

    I think Jon Cooper would be an absolutely ideal head coach hire for the Oil at this point in their history. I also think there’s no way in hell the old boy’s club goes near this guy with a 10 foot pole as he appears to be a definite job security threat to incumbent incompetence.

  57. Traktor says:

    MacT was one of the reasons that Horcoff got that stupid ass contract and he was advocating that Horcoff should be on the Olympic team. lol

    I really don’t know what to think about this.

    Shallow Pools!

  58. bendelson says:

    The old boys club is alive and well and it looks like this is not going to change…
    Once Tambo is declared surplus, plug in MacT and the beat goes on…

    I hope this helps Cooper get a serious look but fear it bodes well for Mr.
    Sutter. Another familiar old school hockey man to join the club.

    I like MacT and don’t hate the move… I just wish every move the org. makes wasn’t so
    bloody predictable.

  59. Rondo says:

    Washington is looking at Jon Cooper, I’m sure there are a few teams willing to do some due diligence on this guy besides the Oilers.

  60. Ducey says:

    Moosemess:

    I think Jon Cooper would be an absolutely ideal head coach hire for the Oil at this point in their history. I also think there’s no way in hell the old boy’s club goes near this guy with a 10 foot pole as he appears to be a definite job security threat to incumbent incompetence.

    My point is that you can’t say anyone is a good person for the job when you don’t know anything about him. There have been lots of guys who have lit up the minor leagues (Brent Sutter for one) and then not done so well in the NHL. How do you know he isn’t going to be one of those guys?

  61. bookje says:

    I like MacT and after he was fired, I think his value became more apparent (and I take back some of my criticisms of him during that time).

    I wonder about this ‘MBA degree’ though, did he have a BA previous or is this one of those ‘Pay us $10,000, come to a few dumbed down undergrad-equivilant classes for a year (or do them online) and we will give you an MBA’ type of degrees. I suspect that is the case.

    I think he is a valuable voice to have at the table, but I wonder how many voices at the table is too many.

    I would love to have Tambellini’s real thoughts about this.

  62. gcw_rocks says:

    Woodguy – the “Welcome back.” was just to warm for me.

    I do understand how anyone who is a fan of this franchise can say anything positive about hirings when the Oilers select someone who is clearly not the best qualified candidate for the job.

    And there is no way anyone can make a case that MacT is most qualified for this position using rationale objective criteria. None.

    When the Oilers put on their 1980s remember when colour glasses and hire MacT for a position for which he has no expereince at any level of hockey or give extensions to a boob like Tambelini I expect fans to rail against it.

    Because if we don’t then the team will never get the message that this is not good enough. That we expect this franchise to get the best damn people available, regardless of previous affiliations.

    This franchise has become a pathetic joke, and this hiring just cements it.

    After 20 years of failed boys on the bus experiments I have had enough. No more, It’s not acceptable.

  63. spoiler says:

    From The Sun:

    The former Edmonton Oilers head coach, who was fired after the 2008-2009 season, has been hired by the organization as the senior vice president of hockey operations.

    MacTavish becomes the second in command under Kevin Lowe.

  64. Moosemess says:

    Ducey, Sutter coached the Rebels in the WHL for 7 years and garnered 1 Finals Appearance. In Cooper’s 2nd year in both the USHL and AHL, his team’s won it all.

    This doesn’t appear to be just a case of a ‘hot’ coach who’s flavour of the month. I can understand the worry that this another Scott Arniel or Craig Hartsburg, but Cooper’s credentials are truly stellar. The worry shouldn’t be whether the man can coach as clearly he’s demonstrated that The worry should be whether he can be successful without having GM powers at his disposal.

    If the Oil snooze on this candidate, he will be in the NHL next year and some other team will benefit greatly. It will take a ballsy GM to make this hire however as Cooper’s resume would seem to indicate he’s a definite threat to climb the ladder rapidly. That said, I believe players make the coach far more in the bigs than they do in the minors, so Cooper’s impact would be less so in a market where the talent level is exceedingly thin.

  65. LP says:

    Wow. I’m happy.

    LT is probably smiling right now. right?

  66. Jon K says:

    Glad MacT is back.

    However, anyone else concerned that the organization seems to now have three individuals with overlapping roles in Lowe, MacT, and Tambellini? Especially since Tambellini was just extended. The organization is becoming more top heavy than the cast of 9 to 5.

  67. Moosemess says:

    One wonders if this is how things work at Rexall? You just keep building out the management team until ‘vision’ finally falls on the desk.

  68. LP says:

    Jon K,

    I’m not concerned. If anything, this should make the transition to MacT as GM easier once Tambo is eventually let go. (after another year of missed playoffs in 2012-2013).

    What’s Tambelini’s reaction to this?

  69. spoiler says:

    Maybe they can hire John Davidson next.

  70. spoiler says:

    So 3 GMs… We might as well go with 2 “Associate Head Coaches” and 3 goalies too. Is Pat Quinn still on the payroll?

    Maybe they can help bailout Spain while they’re at it.

  71. Moosemess says:

    This hire confirms what I’ve long suspected, that the Edmonton Oilers may be the ‘nicest’ organization in the NHL. From Kevin Lowe to Pat Quinn to MacT, people don’t get fired by the Oilers. They get kicked upstairs or brought back in a more important role after a break to recharge their batteries. The Oilers are proof that nice guys DON’T finish last. Nice teams on the other hand….

  72. blackdog says:

    I like MacT and I think a year from now he will have Tambo’s job but I’m not 100% behind this. I think its good that he’s got an actual education and that he seems to be a pretty smart guy but I would feel a whole lot better about it if Lowe were retiring and if he wasn’t one of the old gang.

    I like him and I think he’ll do well but I can’t say I love it. Too much inbreeding with this org.

  73. pboy says:

    I wonder what the odds of a “Dick Cheney” type situation happening are? Slim but I wouldn’t put anything past our management team anymore.

  74. bookje says:

    pboy:
    I wonder what the odds of a “Dick Cheney” type situation happening are?Slim but I wouldn’t put anything past our management team anymore.

    You mean a hunting accident for Horcoff or Khabibulin?

  75. cabbiesmacker says:

    Excellent. Now if Bucky can be signed on as HC the summer will be complete. Eeny, Meeny, Miney, and Mo joined by Larry, Curly, and Shemp.

    Welcome to Putzville…population….one more.

    Hey MacT? How long is it going to take you to bring in your fave player Mike Ribiero? Have you figured out who Jonathon Toews is yet or do we need to go through another Olympics with him as the best player on the ice……from any country…for you to clue in?

    Now we just need a Junior VP of Hockey Operations to compliment the Middlin VP of Hockey Operations answering to the Senior Assistant of Hockey Operations and a VP of Fuck All to do with Operations and we’ll be a contendah.

  76. nathan says:

    Whether or not they do it is another thing, but MacT as safety net, potential mentor, and another sane person with an IQ just made hiring Jon Cooper even easier.

  77. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Great news! Perfect fit for MacT and the team at this point. Hopefully this spells the end of the yearly two worst lines in the league (the Oilers bottom 6). Surely he can provide guidance to Tambolowe in this regard.

    I hope his contract includes a MacT session of the week with the players for:
    Faceoffs
    Blocking Shots
    PK

    Oh yah – 1 interview with the media per week as well.

    Just keep him away from the PP!

  78. cabbiesmacker says:

    regwald:
    Just because you are an ex-Oiler doesn’t mean you know more about hockey than the rest of the league.

    No but it gives you the right to THINK you do.

    “Lets trade down from Parise to Pouliot……weeeee”

    “Lets show em how good our scouting is and take Jesse in the first round….mwaahaaahaa”

  79. cabbiesmacker says:

    jonrmcleod:
    If Montreal was to also offer their first pick, that would be somewhat enticing.

    Somewhat? If you can add Subban giving the Habs Yakupov, and the no Ruskies rule for the BJ’s holds water, and you walk away with Galeynchuk (sp) it’s a much nicer world.

  80. rich says:

    Bringing back MacT certainly harkens back to the good old boys pool, but let’s be honest here, when MacT was dismissed it was time for a change. He’d been in the position a long time and some of his coaching decisions just kept getting stranger and stranger. In hindsight, the job he did w/the talent he had looks better and better. Certainly OTC and Renney couldn’t make chicken salad out of the stuff they were given.

    Just bringing him back – especially since he’s in Op’s and not behind the bench – guarantees nothing. But wouldn’t be interesting if our ability to find NHL vets from the bargain bin improved again? Not saying it was the case or not, but our pro scouting used to be good. I wonder if MacT had an influence on this that none of us were aware?

    I would not be surprised if on the org chart, someone said that it’s a “triumverate” of Vish, Tambi and MacT, but I would think that in the room when actual decisions are made, MacT’s opinion may carry more weight. And it might either help Tambellini finally make decisions or push him into a different role (GM of OKC) which seems to be where his talents are better suited.

    Nothing wrong with that if the owner is willing to pay the bills.

  81. jonrmcleod says:

    cabbiesmacker,

    Yeah, that sounds better than the Schenn deal.

  82. prairieschooner says:

    I like MacT but I am not happy to see him back with the Oilers, I would rather have wished him success wherever he went .
    The Oilers have added another voice to the committee
    I would prefer to see them willing to be accountable for decisions.
    Are they trying to hide?
    Are they frozen ?
    Can they not make a decision as individuals?
    The current “Fish or cut bait” management team has just cut more bait. I do not like it.
    Is Pat Quinn still on the books?

  83. Lois Lowe says:

    I like the decision to bring MacT back, more voices in the room is a good thing, especially before the draft and free agency and a coaching decision is made.

  84. Jordan says:

    “Is Everyone here?”

    “Yeah, I think so…”

    “Good. So, now that I’ve got thinks settled with Cal, why don’t we talk about the future. What is it that you guys want to happen here, and what needs to happen for this team to win like it did in the 80s.”

    “Wow. Seriously? The 80s? Look D, we’re really happy you’ve bought the team, and we’re excited to be working for you now, but… that’s just not going to happen.”

    “Yeah Darryl. Kevin’s right. We don’t have the skill up front to even come close. Gretz, Kurri, Glenn and Mess… They’re the guys who go first overall now. We’d need to be the worst team in the league for years to get those guys, and that’s only if we get lucky with both the lottery balls and the drafting. And there’s no way that anyone who was running that show would end up anywhere near the cup, because they’d get run out of town before the team started winning again.”

    “Yup. That just about sums it up, Craig. Don’t forget that the team had a nice new arena to play in back then too – it was a great place to win. Now, with Rexall place getting so warn down in a crummy part of town… well, to re-do the 80s, we’d need a new arena too. Probably downtown.”

    “Okay. That’s the plan.”

    “…wait, what?”

    —————————
    Excerpts from “Boys on the Bus Volume II” – release date to be determined

  85. FastOil says:

    Moosemess,

    I like MacT and he is a lot funnier than Lowe or Steve. It just seems like hubris. They (the boys) know more than everyone else, the right way. Despite ongoing lack of success. Why can’t they do it like in other country’s sports where you give buddies titles and big salaries in pretend shmoozing jobs, and get good people to do the real work?

    A few crumbs of humility would go along way to realizing what happened before was a rare series of incredible good fortune and perfect timing. It is almost certainly not repeatable, and the game has changed an awful lot over the years, and will keep doing so.

    They should be looking to find the next fresh thinker like Sather was in his time for coach, as the “boys” had, who is in tune with the players of the moment and can get young talent to buy in. I’m not convinced tough coaches or intimidation will work for the current group of youth – fronting is a part of their culture, knees don’t bend to authority quite like they used to at the end of the day.

    MacT might make a good GM, but how many more guys are going to learn on the job in Oiler management while the team flounders?

  86. Moosemess says:

    More management does not always equate to better management. An early Katz trend seems to be to hire 2 candidates at similar levels in the org. Presumably, the objective is to instill competition among the top management (i.e. you better perform or your replacement is waiting in the wings). Unfortunately, it could also create a fairly cutthroat culture where corporate maneuvering and machinations take precedence over actual on-ice performance.

    I like the practise in theory, but it’s unclear how this establishes clear lines of accountability particularly when the owner appears to be a bit of fanboy.

    It would be great to know what performance KPIs Katz uses to evaluate the performance for each of Lowe, Tambellini and MacT’s roles? I suspect Lowe’s are largely revenue and gate driven and thus, he’s probably safe as houses.

  87. Woodguy says:

    Traktor: I raise you Smid on the 4th line.

    Smid wasn’t good enought to play in the top 6, yet the GM has him on the roster.

    Mac playing him there was a message to the GM.

  88. Woodguy says:

    bookje:
    I do have problems with guys who have hockey as their entire professional focus and who have not developed an appreciation for ‘fancystats’.I think it demonstrates a lack of intelligence.

    I think it demonstrates that he hasn’t been exposed to it properly.

    Trak has a point about the usefulness of many of the stats, but they are getting better all the time.

  89. Woodguy says:

    Jordan,

    Could we not also see playing Liam et. al in those positions as a statement that, “It doesn’t matter which of these guys we play here – they’re not top 6 players – I might as well just play a grinder who can saw off the toughts. You want me to play a skill line? Get me a skill player!”

    I agree with this 100%.

    Its also a sad fact that they were also the best option he had available.

  90. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1,

    Schremp was statistically superior to Reddox at nearly every turn and yet did not play because of delusions about “top six, not top six, I like playing games with pegs” thinking.

    I think it was a case of only so many sheltered minutes to go around and Cogliano, Gagner, and Nilsson were simply better than Schremp.

  91. Woodguy says:

    Traktor:
    As for MacTavish.. a wise blogger once wrote an article titled “Shallow Pools”.

    That’s pretty good.

  92. DeadmanWaking says:

    After 20 years of failed boys on the bus experiments I have had enough. No more, It’s not acceptable.

    As far as I’m concerned, EIG was the failed experiment, having operated for so long as a roster-fulfillment center for 29 other teams. MacT had something to work with from Roloson’s arrival right up until Roloson’s injury. How did that go? I never had a problem with MacT giving ice time to players who showed up to work hard and follow the game plan, even if their talent level was suspect. That sure beats handing all the ice time by default to any player with half a lick of talent, whether they try hard or not.

    My only problem with this is MacT’s job title. I wanted to see him hired as the Vice President of Giving Interviews that Explain WTF the Management Office is Trying to Accomplish and WTF We’ll See Results. Come on, MacT, as soon as you scope out the operation from the inside, spike some Roofies into KLowe’s single malt and then step up to an open microphone. We know you want to.

  93. spoiler says:

    So Button’s final list is out… The only change to the Top 20 is sliding Murray down from 12th to 13th and Trouba up that one spot.

  94. hunter1909 says:

    DeadmanWaking: Come on, MacT, as soon as you scope out the operation from the inside, spike some Roofies into KLowe’s single malt and then step up to an open microphone.

    Kevin Lowe wouldn’t know a single malt if it kicked him in the nuts. Lowe’s a Jamieson’s irish(rotgut) whisky man, all the way.

  95. spoiler says:

    Since this is a day of deja vus…

    Some OT bailout humour.

    Next thing you know Patrick Duffy will be back on TV as Bobby Ewing or something.

  96. Marc says:

    bookje:

    I wonder about this ‘MBA degree’ though, did he have a BA previous or is this one of those ‘Pay us $10,000, come to a few dumbed down undergrad-equivilant classes for a year (or do them online) and we will give you an MBA’ type of degrees.I suspect that is the case.

    MacT played college hockey at UMass Lowell for a couple years before he made the Bruins so he probably did end up with a BA.

    According to the Financial Times the Queens EMBA program is one of the top 50 in the world
    http://www.ft.com/cms/1711e7b0-fc01-11e0-b1d8-00144feab49a.pdf

  97. mustang says:

    LMHF#1: Many would know why I usually say this, but let us add something to the mix: Schremp was statistically superior to Reddox at nearly every turn and yet did not play because of delusions about “top six, not top six, I like playing games with pegs” thinking. That was BS. If you can’t coach with hitters in the bottom of your order, you can’t coach.

    I can not believe somebody actually will stick up for Rob Schremp, tell us your joking about this.
    MacT did not play the super kid because he probably wasn’t that good, last I checked he’s not ripping it up with a different team, not only that I don’t he’s good enough to make it in the KHL. Damn that MacT ruined him…

  98. Lois Lowe says:

    In the immortal words of the Oracle Pythia (Battlestar Galactica is the second best TV show ever made):

    “All of this has happened before. All of this will happen again.”

    If I were LT, I would be posting pictures of Caprica 6 at this point. She’s a good old Stettler gal and oh so lovely.

  99. LMHF#1 says:

    Woodguy:
    LMHF#1,

    Schremp was statistically superior to Reddox at nearly every turn and yet did not play because of delusions about “top six, not top six, I like playing games with pegs” thinking.

    I think it was a case of only so many sheltered minutes to go around and Cogliano, Gagner, and Nilsson were simply better than Schremp.

    Precisely. Perception and pegs. He was better than Reddox ergo on a team of the best players, he plays. We were not that team.

  100. LMHF#1 says:

    mustang: I can not believe somebody actually will stick up for Rob Schremp, tell us your joking about this.
    MacT did not play the super kid because he probably wasn’t that good, last I checked he’s not ripping it up with a different team, not only that I don’t he’s good enough to make it in the KHL. Damn that MacT ruined him…

    I purposefully didn’t reopen the discussion, which lasted a long time, contained a bunch of analysis (both stats and “seen’im”), and speaks to philosophies about hockey teams and players. Your comment has very little to do with, or relevance to, my response to WG.

    Better than Reddox was the point. Even this year’s SEL stats show that.

  101. Traktor says:

    Woodguy:
    LMHF#1,

    I think it was a case of only so many sheltered minutes to go around and Cogliano, Gagner, and Nilsson were simply better than Schremp.

    The exact same thing happened this year with the kids and Omark but Renney wasn’t given the benefit of the doubt because his name isn’t Craig MacTavish.

  102. Marc says:

    Off topic but Kelly just resigned in Boston for 4 x $3M. And David Jones just got 4 x $4M from Colorado.

    Is it just me or are third line forwards getting frankly insane amounts of money and term?

  103. DSF says:

    Bob McKenzie ‏@TSNBobMcKenzie

    BOS agrees to terms with Chris Kelly on four-year, $12M deal and Gregory Campbell on three-year, $4.8M deal. AAVs of $3M and $1.6M.

  104. Woodguy says:

    bookje,

    wonder about this ‘MBA degree’ though, did he have a BA previous or is this one of those ‘Pay us $10,000, come to a few dumbed down undergrad-equivilant classes for a year (or do them online) and we will give you an MBA’ type of degrees. I suspect that is the case.

    Pretty sure he got his MBA from Western. (University of Western Ontario)

    Top rated MBA program in Canada usually.

  105. Woodguy says:

    gcw_rocks,

    do understand how anyone who is a fan of this franchise can say anything positive about hirings when the Oilers select someone who is clearly not the best qualified candidate for the job.

    I’m not sure what their critera was for the position.

    I think its more like Katz wanted Mac back and they created the position.

    He’s the smartest guy at Oiler’s HQ now, so that’s a plus.

  106. Woodguy says:

    Woodguy:
    bookje,

    wonder about this ‘MBA degree’ though, did he have a BA previous or is this one of those ‘Pay us $10,000, come to a few dumbed down undergrad-equivilant classes for a year (or do them online) and we will give you an MBA’ type of degrees. I suspect that is the case.

    Pretty sure he got his MBA from Western. (University of Western Ontario)

    Top rated MBA program in Canada usually.

    Oops, I guess it was Queens.

    Thought it was Western.
    i

  107. sliderule says:

    If you can take anything from MacT’s interview with Stauffer it should be down to Sutter or Cooper or some. other new blood including all the assistants.

    If only one good thing comes from the MacT signing that would be enough.

  108. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1: Precisely. Perception and pegs. He was better than Reddox ergo on a team of the best players, he plays. We were not that team.

    If you can’t beat Gagner, Cogliano and Nilsson for job, well then….

  109. Jordan says:

    Lois Lowe:
    In the immortal words of the Oracle Pythia (Battlestar Galactica is the second best TV show ever made):

    “All of this has happened before. All of this will happen again.”

    If I were LT, I would be posting pictures of Caprica 6 at this point. She’s a good old Stettler gal and oh so lovely.

    Seconded.

    Marc:
    Is it just me or are third line forwards getting frankly insane amounts of money and term?

    I’m sorry. Are you new to Edmonton Oilers Hockey?

    Don’t worry – you’ll get used to it. Or you’ll end up like Hunter.

  110. Ducey says:

    Traktor: The exact same thing happened this year with the kids and Omark but Renney wasn’t given the benefit of the doubt because his name isn’t Craig MacTavish.

    Either that or its because he finished 30th and 29th.

    Are there people out there that still feel MacT ruined Robbie Schremp? Astounding.

  111. Dave Casselman says:

    Did MacTavish elaborate at all as to why ALL the coaches had to go? I happen to think Ralphy the K would make an excellent head coach. Oh, wait. The Oilers PP under the K happened to finish 3rd overall, and 3rd just couldn’t possibly measure up to 10 years of Craig’s lofty standards.

  112. Zack says:

    You don’t know what you got, till it’s gone! The Old Boys Club, an interesting hire but I’m happy to see it. A much more interactive and meaningful position than what Pat Quinn was “elevated” to. I’m not sure I can see Mac T as GM but it’s definitely within the possibility, good on him!

    I’m just waiting for the fun interview!

    Reporter: ST, how does it feel – the guy who you once fired is now taking your job as GM?

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