Oilers hire Canadian university coach Herbers

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The Edmonton Oilers didn’t have to search far and wide for their new assistant coach.

Ian Herbers has spent the last three seasons as head coach at the University of Alberta, located in Edmonton. The 47-year-old former NHL defenseman coached the Golden Bears to consecutive CIS national championships in his last two seasons at the school.

The Oilers announced today that Herbers would join Todd McLellan’s staff.

Herbers will work with new assistants Jay Woodcroft and Jim Johnson under McLellan.

As it turns out, the Oilers’ gain was the Kelowna Rockets’ loss. The WHL team had apparently hoped to hire Herbers as a replacement for head coach Dan Lambert, who left for the Sabres earlier this month.