The Edmonton Oilers are shaping up to be in the running for the third straight No. 1 overall pick in the draft this season. With that kind of futility you’d expect that big changes would be on the way.
According to Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun, you’d be half right.
Jones reports that the Oilers will be extending GM Steve Tambellini’s deal to stay on as the architect of a team that’s currently 29th overall in the league.
Indeed, sometime between the all-star break and the trade deadline, it is expected Oilers’ owner Daryl Katz and president of hockey operations Kevin Lowe will sit down and work out the arrangements of a new deal going forward.
When the deal gets announced, Jones says, all depends on when (or if) the Oilers go on another winning streak. If the team keeps losing, making an announcement that you’re keeping the guy that built a loser of a team around won’t go over too well.
What’s curious here, as Jonathan Willis of the Edmonton Journal points out, is that Tambellini is in the final year of his contract. If the team is stinking things up this bad, why keep him around any longer? General managers usually get a bit more rope to do things and Tambellini is in his fourth year with the team.
Four years and possibly three No. 1 picks? He’s either a terrible GM or a genius helping them fill up on young talent the hard way.