The Edmonton Oilers front office overhaul continued on Thursday.
The club announced it has relieved Associate Coach Keith Acton and Assistant Coach Craig Ramsay of their duties. The pair were hired by former head coach Dallas Eakins who was fired in December.
Today’s moves could pave the way for Todd Nelson to return to the club.
Nelson was given permission to explore other opportunities following the hiring of Todd McLellan.
However, hockey insider Darren Dreger reported on Tuesday that Nelson has had discussions with the Oilers about joining McLellan’s staff.
Jay Woodcroft, who was an assistant with McLellan in San Jose, is also expected to join the Oilers’ staff.
With Todd McLellan taking over the Edmonton Oilers’ head coaching duties the club has allowed interim head coach Todd Nelson to look for a job elsewhere.
According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the Oilers would like to keep Nelson on their staff, but the 46-year-old has a desire to be a head coach.
Friedman reports the Oilers will re-visit the possibility of Nelson remaining with the club in a different capacity in a couple of weeks.
After coaching the Oilers’ American Hockey League affiliate in Oklahoma City for four seasons, Nelson was promoted to interim head coach of the NHL club when Dallas Eakins was fired in December.
Nelson led the Oilers to a 17-25-9 record.
Former Edmonton Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins is on Philadelphia Flyers’ short list to fill their coaching vacancy.
According to Sportsnet’s Damien Cox, Eakins, who was fired by the Oilers in December, could be a possibility to fill the spot left by the recently fired Craig Berube.
Eakins led the Oilers to a 36-62-14 record over parts of two seasons.
Prior to taking the coaching job in Edmonton, Eakins spent four seasons with the American Hockey League’s Toronto Marlies.
Philadelphia finished 24th overall this season with a 33-31-18 record in Berube’s second season behind the Flyers’ bench. The 49-year-old was fired on April 17.
Todd Nelson will look to steer the Oilers in the right direction as he takes over as head coach tonight when Edmonton plays host to the L.A. Kings.
Nelson had been working alongside general manager Craig MacTavish since the Dec. 15 firing of Dallas Eakins.
Since MacTavish took over, the Oilers have gone 0-3-2 and have not won in nine games overall.
Edmonton will have a couple new faces on the ice as well. Newly acquired forwards Derek Roy and Matt Fraser are expected to be in the lineup against the Kings.
Fraser, 24, was plucked off waivers by the Oilers from the Bruins on Monday. In 24 games this season, the Red Deer, Alberta native has three goals and seven penalty minutes to go along with a minus-5 rating.
Fraser skated on the right side of Leon Draisaitl and David Perron at the team’s morning skate.
Roy, who was acquired by Edmonton from Nashville in exchange for Mark Arcobello on Monday, skated between Nail Yakupov and Teddy Purcell.
The 31-year-old had a goal and nine helpers in 26 games with the Predators this season.
Both players are on expiring contracts.
Recently fired Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins could be headed back to the Toronto Maple Leafs organization.
During Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday, Sportsnet’s Damien Cox reported Eakins, who served a number of roles in the Leafs’ organization prior to joining the Oilers, could be headed back east.
Eakins served as an assistant coach for the Maple Leafs from 2006 until 2008 and became head coach of the AHL’s Toronto Marlies in 2009. Eakins coached the Marlies for four seasons seasons leading the club to a Calder Cup final appearance in 2012.
Cox had the following to say on the future of the 47-year-old:
Don’t be surprised if he ends up back in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization. He’s held a number of jobs, including being head coach of their AHL affiliate the Toronto Marlies. Eakins has done a number of things for the Leafs organization including player personnel and assistant coach.
Eakins was fired by the Oilers on Dec. 15 after coaching Edmonton a 36-62-14 record over parts of two seasons.