First up in our look into what changes can or will happen with the Edmonton Oilers next season in regards to Management.
We know their is a Lynch mob waiting to crucify Lowe in the City of Edmonton. Even the fans at the arena are calling for his head. The only constant left through all these years is Kevin Lowe. The argument we hear from Katz (the owner) and other members of the MSM is Lowe does not affect what happens on the ice. Do you believe that? Does not leadership start from the top down. Did he not move himself into presidency and hire Tamby to run this once storied franchise into the basement cellar of the NHL? Yup, same guy.
Personally I like Lowe and everything he did as a player. I like him as a person but as management, not so sure he brings what this team needs. Still doubt that changing management (who is not a GM) matters? Lets take a look at 1 man who has proven that theory wrong on 2 occasions. His name is John Davidson! The following articles were written either after being in St.Louis or after and moving to Columbus. All we have to do is look at the difference in attitude that team adopted. It's the LEADERSHIP culture that he changes and what he expects out of all his staff , not to mention his selection of hockey minds to run that part of the business has a proven track record.
Here are the articles written on Davidson;
"Since his arrival, Davidson has been involved in the acquisitions of Andy McDonald, Alex Steen, Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart and Kevin Shattenkirk while continuing to develop a solid young team." by NHL.com
"Davidson will find a number of opportunities in the NHL to do what he did in St. Louis: Build a winner on the ice through the draft and smart spending, and be the voice of the organization in keeping fans enthusiastic about the direction of the franchise….Davidson's a rock star executive, and an asset to any team that manages to add him to the brain trust."By Greg Wyshynski
"Davidson has said he is intrigued by the Blue Jackets, who traded the club's most recognizable and dependable commodity this summer, Rick Nash. The Blue Jackets are young with a promising list of defencemen but big questions in net and when it comes to scoring."
"The problems that Davidson will face in Columbus are not unlike what he encountered when he first arrived in St. Louis. The Blues were last in the NHL in 2005-06 with 56 points but have gradually become one of the league's top teams". by The Associated press
"Davidson was brought into the organization in December of 2005 when the Blues were in the basement of the NHL. Davidson wasted no time in improving the front office. Al MacInnis was promoted to vice president, Dave Taylor became involved with player personnel and when GM Larry Pleau had to step down to senior adviser, Davidson made his best hiring in Doug Armstrong for the GM position. If any one person should be credited with the rise of the Blues, it is Davidson. Davidson knew exactly who he needed in the GM positions to make the team homegrown and into contenders, even if it would take a few years."
"There are currently only three players, David Backes, Roman Polak and Barrett Jackman who were drafted before Davidson became president. Since then, there are six players that receive regular playing time (T.J. Oshie, Ryan Reaves, Patrik Berglund, Ian Cole, David Perron and Alex Pietrangelo) and many others currently in the NHL or ready to come up now. Because of these drafted players the Blues rose from the basement of the NHL in 2005 to Central Division Champs and only two points away from the President's Trophy. The team has gone from looking as bare as a youth hockey rink to having standing room only crowds. When Davidson was hired the Blues were last in the hearts of the city. Now, they rival the Cardinals for passionate fans. Davidson has taken the team from the ashes of the lockout and turned them into a Cup contending team." By ,
Not bad recommendations by several writers and if you examined the ownership of NHL teams many would love to have this man running their ship. I realize he is only 1 man but that 1 man is also only a PRESIDENT of an NHL team, just like Kevin Lowe. Nobody can convince me that the position of President has no impact on the ice.
It won't happen before the season starts but another bad start next season for the Oilers and Kevin Lowe's position WILL no longer be secure, after all you can only live on your 5 Stanley Cup rings for so long and you can only give the same excuses for so long. The only way Lowe will continue in management is if the Oilers make a strong push for the playoffs right up to the bitter end. Anything less and IMO he will be let go. Love the guy but winning franchises have to know how to let go of not only players but management and coaches that have expired dates on their resume when it comes to winning.
Next article, we will discuss the area of coaching and examine how safe the Coaches are within the Oilers organization.