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Welcome Home MacT

Who says you can’t go home? Amidst stories that Georges Laraque would like to return to the NHL was the story that Craig MacTavish might be returning to the Oilers.

As the story grew, it was reported by the Vancouver Canucks that MacT was leaving his coaching position with the Canucks’ AHL affiliate team the Chicago Wolves to pursue other opportunities. With that release speculation grew that MacT was taking a management position with the Oilers. And now we have an official press release from the Oilers saying that Craig MacTavish is the new Senior Vice-President of Hockey Operations. There will be more information later this afternoon at a press address.

General Manager Steve Tambellini announced today the Edmonton Oilers have added Craig MacTavish to the club’s Hockey Operations Management team as Senior Vice-President, Hockey Operations.

MacTavish, 53, was the Head Coach of the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League this past season, where he led the Vancouver Canucks’ AHL affiliate to a 42-27-7 record, third best in the conference.

Named the eighth coach in Oilers history on June 22, 2000, MacTavish compiled a career record of 301-252-103 (.537) in 656 regular season games over the course of eight seasons (2000-01 to 2008-09).

MacTavish became the 36th coach in NHL history to win 300-or-more games with a 5-3 win versus the Vancouver Canucks on April 4th at Rexall Place.

He completed his coaching tenure behind the Oilers bench after the 2008-09 season, ranking second among Edmonton coaches in games coached, wins, losses, ties/overtime losses and winning percentage and ranked 36th all-time in NHL history in wins and 41st in games coached.

The former Oilers’ captain has a 17-13 (.567) record in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and became the third coach to lead the Oilers to the Stanley Cup Final.

In 2005-06 MacTavish guided the Oilers to their first trip to the Stanley Cup Final since 1990, as Edmonton fell in seven games to the Carolina Hurricanes. After finishing the regular season in 8th place in the NHL’s Western Conference standings with a 41-28-13 record, MacTavish led the Oilers to within a game of their sixth Stanley Cup. In the post-season the Oilers went 15-9 and defeated the President Trophy winning Detroit Red Wings, the San Jose Sharks and the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim on their way to winning the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl as Western Conference champions.

After departing the Oilers organization following the 2008-09 season, MacTavish earned a master’s degree in business from Queen’s University and spent two years as an analyst for the NHL on TSN.

Filed in: AHL, Chicago Wolves, Edmonton Oilers, | Oil Patch | Permalink


BrendonTO's avatar

Given the mess that’s gone on under Lowe and then Tambellini, it’s good to see MacT brought back.  Now all they have to do is take Yakupov with the No. 1 pick, get some actual quality dmen (who aren’t chronically injured) via trade and a good young goalie and they’ll be set.  What about Gagner and Omark for Bernier?

Posted by BrendonTO on 06/11/12 at 01:59 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

I agree. I didn’t think that MacT was a bad coach but did the see that a coaching change might have brought about some change. It’s too bad that didn’t work out.

It’s looking more and more like the Oilers are taking Murray, which may come back to bite them. They’re pushing the relationship with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins right now.

Quick has been amazing for the Kings but I’m not sure that they would be willing to trade Bernier just yet. Also, I keep hoping that Omark might be involved with the trade for Justin Schultz, the right to conversations that is.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 06/11/12 at 02:08 PM ET

BrendonTO's avatar

It’s looking more and more like the Oilers are taking Murray, which may come back to bite them. They’re pushing the relationship with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins right now.

Posted by Lisa McRitchie on 06/11/12 at 01:08 PM ET

Interesting.  Might give some weight to the rumours of them trading down - I can’t imagine they would actually take Murray at #1?  Still, the talk has been mainly about Burke sending Schenn for a pick-flip, and they aren’t getting Murray at #5.

Posted by BrendonTO on 06/11/12 at 02:34 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

It could just be smoke and mirrors still at this point, and while I’m thinking of it, it could be Matt Dumba RNH talks about this afternoon when the video is posted.

I agree, Murray won’t be there at #5. But taking Yakupov would help the Oilers a lot.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 06/11/12 at 02:51 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Perhaps dipping into the AHL or even ECHL for their next coach might be worth a shot, Lisa?

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 06/11/12 at 03:34 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

I don’t think that they can take that “risk” SYF, the team has to compete for the playoffs next year with the too high expectation that they need to make the playoffs. I think that it might be too much of a gamble.

If they promote Kruger I’m not sure that it will be any different than having Renney man the bench and if they go with Sutter… well I still don’t think that he has enough NHL success under his bench. The problem is who else is out there? I think it is down to the two right now.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 06/11/12 at 03:50 PM ET

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Lisa McRitchie is a fairly new writer, online at least, but makes up for inexperience with passion for the game of hockey and memories of Mrs. Leskiw’s English AP class; who knew they would pay off one day.

Oil Patch focuses on the Edmonton Oilers, the Edmonton Oil Kings, The Oklahoma City Barons and Team Canada Hockey with game coverage, news updates, speculation and interviews.

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