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Quinn out as Oilers coach, Renney promoted

Tuesday, 06.22.2010 / 4:21 PM / News

Associated Press

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) -Pat Quinn was removed as coach of the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday after his team finished with the worst record in the league in his first season. He was replaced by Oilers assistant Tom Renney, who will be running his third NHL team.

Quinn was assigned to the front office as a senior adviser. Edmonton was 27-48-8 with Quinn behind the bench, 33 points below the playoff cutoff in the Western Conference.

The team's 62 points was just two points more than the franchise low, set in 1992-93. Edmonton won just 18 games at home and nine on the road.

Renney has coached the New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks. Oilers general manager Steve Tambellini said at a news conference a succession plan had been in place for Renney to succeed Quinn, but the process was accelerated.

Quinn replaced fired coach Craig MacTavish on May 26, 2009. It was Quinn's first head coaching position since being dismissed by Toronto in 2006.

"It goes without saying how valuable Pat Quinn is to our organization and we will continue to rely heavily on Pat's experience as we move forward with rebuilding this franchise," Tambellini said in a statement. "Pat will make a strong contribution throughout our system - no question."

Renney becomes the 10th head coach in franchise history. Before joining the Oilers this season, he spent five seasons as the Rangers' coach and was fired in February 2009.

"Tom Renney's track record not only speaks for itself, but it also speaks volumes about what type of person he is. He is a tireless worker who cares about this organization," Tambellini said. "Tom is so well respected among his peers in the National Hockey League and throughout the international hockey circles thanks to his dedication and success at so many different levels."

Many thought the Oilers might be able to compete for a playoff spot this season. Then came season-ending injuries to goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin, Ales Hemsky, Sheldon Souray and Ladislav Smid, putting the lineup in constant flux.

The Oilers had neither the experience nor the depth to compensate. Khabibulin, the team's major off-season acquisition last summer, made only 18 appearances before being sidelined by a back injury that would require surgery. Rookies Jeff Deslauriers and Devan Dubnyk were forced to carry the load.

Quote of the Day

The groove of being behind a bench is going to be interesting at first, but thank God we have a few exhibition games to get rid of those cobwebs. Overall the excitement of it all and the freshness and coming back refreshed, all those things are going to be assets. If [the players] come ready to give their best effort in practice and games, good things are going to happen. I'm always looking for results. It's not always on the scoreboard. It's winning and building something.

— Bryan Trottier on making his return to coaching as an assistant with the Sabres