Oilers name Keith Gretzky interim GM, CEO assesses what needs to change

Oilers name Keith Gretzky interim GM, CEO assesses what needs to change

Peter Chiarelli is out as the general manager of the Edmonton Oilers.

Oilers Entertainment Group CEO/vice chair Bob Nicholson will oversee hockey operations.

It is expected that assistant general manager Keith Gretzky, Wayne's younger brother, will assume some of the GM responsibilities.

For many, the acquisition of Brandon Manning was the tipping point, and a loss to the last-place Detroit Red Wings just put it over the edge.

The Oilers are by no means out of the playoff hunt, but they appear to be trending in the wrong direction.

"It feels really good to get two points going into the break feeling good about our game", Larkin said. "And we got to get that figured out".

"I know there are people out there that believe this team can't make the playoffs". He was hired in 2015 after the Oilers won the draft lottery and selected star Connor McDavid.

Two months ago it looked like he'd brilliantly bailed himself out when he fired McLellan and hired the NHL's third winningest coach in history in Edmonton native Ken Hitchcock.

"We know that we have to bring in some other pieces, but we're going to put all of the onus on the group inside the dressing room", Nicholson said.

Draisaitl had a goal and assist, and Matt Benning scored for Edmonton (23-24-3), which has lost three straight.

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Nicholson said Hitchcock will remain coach for the rest of the season as Edmonton tries to close the gap and qualify for the postseason with 32 games left.

Chiarelli, of course, is responsible for the trade that sent Taylor Hall to the Devils for Adam Larsson in 2016.

"We're not going to trade any of our assets away for a quick fix".

There is no immediate replacement in line for Chiarelli, so Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Scott Howson will fill in for Chiarelli, according to ESPN.

Chiarelli, the former Bruins GM, had taken over the job with the Oilers in 2015.

He shipped out Jordan Eberle for what turned out to be Ryan Spooner, a player the Oilers waved Monday then returned to the line-up Tuesday where he was a passenger yet again.

Under Chiarelli's leadership, the Oilers were 137-133-25.

Chiarelli made another controversial move roughly 24 hours before his firing, signing goalie Mikko Koskinen to a three-year, $13.5 million contract extension with trade protection.

The team announced Chiarelli's abrupt dismissal in the aftermath of its third consecutive loss.

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