Sports Outside the Beltway

Edmonton Oilers fire coach Craig MacTavish

He is the first NHL coach to lose his job during the off-season. From AP-

He was fired Wednesday after the Oilers failed to make the playoffs for the third straight year. The dismissal came on the same day the NHL postseason began, and general manager Steve Tambellini said the team needed a fresh look behind the bench.

“He gave everything he possibly could to help this team get better,” Tambellini said during a news conference. “But we both agree that it is time for a change.”

The Oilers finished 11th in the Western Conference with a record of 38-35-9 for 85 points. This was the fifth time in seven seasons they have not reached the playoffs.

MacTavish has certainly had an interesting NHL career. Originally a Boston Bruin, he spent a year in jail after being convicted of vehicular homicide in 1985. When released, no one but Edmonton was willing to give him a chance. He put his life together and was a key member during the Oilers’ heyday when Wayne Gretzky and others led the franchise to five Stanley Cup championships, three of which MacTavish contributed to.

As a coach, MacTavish took the Oilers to the finals in 2006. Now he’s out of work and ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun speculates about his replacement. MacTavish may well get a second chance as a NHL coach, just like he received one as a player.

Related Stories:
Recent Stories:

Comments are Closed


Visitors Since Feb. 4, 2003

All original content copyright 2003-2008 by OTB Media. All rights reserved.