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article imageOp-Ed: Edmonton Oilers should clean house, fire coach and GM

By Marcus Hondro     Nov 23, 2014 in Sports
Another losing season for the Edmonton Oilers, the dye has already been cast and we're but 21 games in. Their record is 6-13-2 and they've scored 25 fewer goals than allowed. All their numbers are trending downwards and they are last in the NHL.
Edmonton Oilers: no Stanley Cup playoffs again
What hurts the most in Edmonton is that fans have not seen the postseason since 2006, the longest streak in the NHL, longer even than that of the Toronto Maple Leafs or Florida Panthers. Seven straight seasons and the promise of an eighth.
That's longer than the seven-year itch, right?
It is. So scratch it. Fire the coach, In fact, fire the GM. Neither Dallas Eakins or Craig MacTavish has done anything to suggest they are going to turn this team into a winner anytime soon. The Oilers are not even competitive and someone suggested on Twitter that the drop of oil on their jersey is now a teardrop.
Where was the effort last night when they got steamrolled on home ice by the Chicago Blackhawks, 7-1? And how did they allow the Vancouver Canucks, supposed to be headed down in the standings while the Oilers were finally supposed to be heading up, beat them four times already this season?
Under Eakins the Oilers remain undisciplined and break-downs and turnovers occur with alarming regularity. He preaches aggressive hockey but it leads to forwards not picking up checks as play moves into their end and defenceman out of position. Eakins' brand of aggressive hockey isn't working, period.
Craig McTavish: no help, no improvement
And the GM should be held accountable. It was a costly decision to hire Eakins, give him a four-year deal and fire Ralph Krueger, who had just one 48-game season to guide the team. A season in which they improved from 28th to 24th (19-22-7) and finished ahead of 11 NHL teams in goals against. They are last in the NHL in goals against right now.
Further, MacTavish hasn't been able to pull off a trade to help, nor has any of his free-agent signings done much to improve their play, though certainly David Perron has been a valuable addition and worth Magnus Paarjarvi and a 2nd round draft pick. And while it's hard to argue with his entry draft selections, you and I could have stood on the podium and called out the names of Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
Paying off the two years Krueger had left on his contract has to have stung owner Daryl Katz but that doesn't change the fact that it's time for him to payout two men who've been unable to turn things around for the Oil. This season is all but over, they'll be no postseason, but he needs to do it for next season.
After all, it's past the seven-year itch.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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