As per Emily Kaplan of ESPN, there could be a coaching change for the Edmonton Oilers, should the team lose their game on January 10 against the Ottawa Senators. The Oilers are on a massive run, losing 11 of their last 13 and are set for a small break with NHL postponements due to attendance issues. If there’s going to be a change, Kaplan suggests this might be the time GM Ken Holland pulls the trigger.
Related: Mikko Koskinen Fires Back at Tippett and Oilers For Recent Criticism
Kaplan notes during a hit on ESPN’s The Point:
Ken Holland the GM — it’s important to note in all of his years in Detroit he never made an (in-season) coaching change. I’ve talked to a lot of sources in the league who don’t know what Ken Holland is going to do, but if he does make a move, January 10th is their next game, they play the Ottawa Senators. If they lose to the Senators, there will be a lot of pressure from fans and that would be the time to do it as they have 10 days before their next game.
Kaplan goes on to say that the Oilers probably won’t go for a big name on the coaching market like Claude Julien, Paul Maurice or Mike Babcock. Instead, the team would look to promote internally someone like Glen Gulutzan (assistant coach) or bring up Jay Woodcroft from Bakersfield of the AHL. She adds, “But it’s definitely an inflection point in Edmonton right now.”
John Tortorella noted that Tippett’s comments about goaltender Mikko Koskinen was likely a mistake (which Tortoreall admitted he’s made many times) and said that Koskinen firing back has only started something that is potentially going to haunt both sides.
Could Be Tippett’s Last Season
Kaplan does point out that regardless of whether or not Holland makes a change during the year, because Tippett is on the final year of his current coaching contract, if the Oilers don’t perform well this season or make a run in the playoffs, Holland may make a change anyways.
Either way, Tippett is on the hot seat. He badly needs a win and the Senators are potential his last hope going into a small break. If the team loses, there will be a lot of talk about Tippett’s future and whether or not Holland will make a change before the Oilers get too far back to make this season one in which they could be contenders.
Next: Maple Leafs Finally Decide: Nick Ritchie Put on Waivers Today
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