No doubt about it, the Edmonton Oilers have been one of the most disappointing teams during the 2017-18 NHL season. Pegged by many fans and analysts to be a legitimate Stanley Cup contender after a strong showing during the 2017 Stanely Cup Playoffs, the Oilers have limped their way through the campaign and look destined for another bottom 10 finish in the NHL standings.
It’s unfortunate, but really… Oilers fans are accustomed to this by now. At this point, the Oilers have their disappointments down to a system where they start the season with such promise, stumble out of the gate and then completely fall out of the playoff race by about Christmas. The only difference these days is at least Oilers fans have Connor McDavid highlights to console themselves with.
So, after yet another failed season in Alberta’s capital, who pays the price? Well, according to TSN’s panel of insiders it’s Oilers head coach Todd McLellan who is most likely to walk to plank.
On last night’s “Insider Trading” segment TSN analysts Bob McKenzie, Pierre LeBrun and Darren Dreger highlighted McLellan as one of the NHL coaches “on the hot seat” once the season concludes.
Check out the video clip here:
The Edmonton Journal’s David Staples threw his opinion into the ring on McLellan’s future in Edmonton:
McLellan’s name is interesting on this list, and not unexpected, even if every single reporter, columnist and broadcaster who regularly covers the Oilers and deals with McLellan in scrums is firmly onside with keeping the coach. If the Oilers players themselves are still so firmly in McLellan’s camp, the Oilers have a keeper, but I wonder about that after this wretched season.
Here’s the thing, David… management and players don’t give a damn what reporters, columnists and broadcasters think. If they feel like they have a better shot at winning with someone else behind the bench, they’ll make a move and not look back. The question is, will there be a better option out there?
If the rumours about Joel Quenneville leaving the Chicago Blackhawks are true, you have to imagine that Oilers management will at least pursue the idea of bringing him on board. There’s also speculation that several other quality veteran coaches could be looking for employment this upcoming offseason including Bill Peters, Alain Vigneault and Barry Trotz. Do any of these names intrigue Oilers management? Time will tell.