Oilers say they’re very close to hiring new head coach


Rumors are swirling about the Edmonton Oilers hiring Dallas Eakins, but it appears that announcement won’t come until later.

During the press conference to announce the firing of Ralph Krueger, new Oilers GM Craig MacTavish admitted that the team is “very close” to signing an unnamed candidate, but not enough to announce a deal.

Considering the fact that Oilers are about to hire their fourth coach in five years, it’s probably worthwhile to ask if Eakins or some other coach will get the chance to choose his assistant and associate coaches. MacTavish was coy about that.

“I’m hopeful that our current staff will be retained but it will be up to the new coach,” MacTavish said.

TSN’s Darren Dreger ranks among the media members who expect Eakins to be announced as the team’s newest bench boss sometime next week.

If it comes to pass, it will present a fascinating scenario: arguably the most-hyped young head coaching prospect would guide one of the most-hyped groups of young players in the NHL.

Here’s a Getty Images shot of Eakins, in case you want to size up the (potentially soon-to-be former) head coach of the Toronto Marlies:

source: Getty Images