The message in Edmonton seems to be clear: out with the old.
The Oilers got rid of 84 years of collective experience Friday, when they fired head trainer Ken Lowe and equipment managers Barry Stafford and Lyle Kulchisky. Each had served for more than two decades with the franchise, while Kulchisky had served the club since its World Hockey Association days.
But there's concern among Oiler fans and commentators about the way the team handled the personnel changes, by issuing a news release on a Friday afternoon, Hockey Night in Canada's Elliotte Friedman told the Hotstove segment Saturday night.
"Maybe it would be a good idea when the season starts for [the Oilers] to honour those people in front of their fans," Friedman suggested, "because they are a link to the great Oilers' teams of the '80s."
Quick staying put
After his brutal outing in Game 5, Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick will get the start for Sunday's Game 6, HNIC's Pierre LeBrun said.
Quick was pulled early in the third period, giving way to Erik Ersberg.
There's no truth to the rumours that goalie Jonathan Bernier would be called up from AHL-affiliate Manchester, LeBrun said.
Other Hotstove news:
- The Los Angeles Kings hope to sign defenceman Drew Doughty to a long term contract extension, during the summer.
- The Detroit Red Wings are expecting to get forward Jiri Hudler back from Russia for next season. He has reportedly accepted a two-year, $2.875-million-a-year deal that was awarded through arbitration.
Stafford has accepted another position with the organization.
It's also expected that similar deals will be made with Lowe (brother of GM Kevin) and Kulchisky.
Earlier in the week, the Oilers fired assistant general manager Kevin Prendergast.
"It came as a shock [to those who follow the Oilers]. They've made four changes so far and none involve any of the players. People start to say, 'Whoa, are these the guys that are at fault?'" Friedman said.
The Oilers, who finished last in the NHL, want to change the culture of the organization, from bottom to top.
Although the team's 67-year-old coach Pat Quinn appears to be safe, there is a feeling that the organization needs a wave of youth, Friedman said.
Hockey Night in Canada analyst Glenn Healy went one step further, criticizing the aging medical staff.
Healy suggested that younger training and medical staff would be more likely to try cutting edge treatments, such as active release therapy.
The Oilers led the NHL in man-games lost to injury.