The Edmonton Oilers added long-time NHL coach Craig Ramsay as an assistant coach a few weeks ago. Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins told 630 CHED that another hire could be approaching but he is undecided on which way he would like to go. Eakins says the team is considering hiring a younger coach to help connect better with the young players on the roster.
“It’s something that we’re kicking around,” Eakins said. “We do have a spot that we can fill, if we would like to. The conversation now is that we have two unbelievably experienced coaches with Keith (Acton) and Craig. Now if we do decide to add another one do we look for another experienced one or is it better off to go with somebody maybe a little younger who is more in touch with the players. I think that’s an important thing to look at too.”
Should the Oilers fill another coaching spot Eakins says it will not be on the bench, which makes it difficult to do the hiring now with bench positions still open around the league.
“It’s something right now where it’s tough to even start considering people because everyone I do talk to here at the draft, they all have their hat in the ring and are looking to fill a spot on somebody else’s bench right now. I understand that. The role that we’re looking for is going to be somebody that’s not on the bench. A lot of guys aren’t real enthused about that while there are still spots open around the league on the bench and I totally understand that. I’m just going to wait until the other teams fill their benches, see what’s available and then it gives me some more time to kick around which way we go with this.”
Once the open jobs around the NHL are fewer in number the Oilers can re-focus on what type of coach they want to bring in, if any.
“Do we want a younger guy that can maybe connect a little bit better with the players or have another heavily experienced coach that could have a little disconnect with the generation of our players,” Eakins said.