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Update: Oilers stop procrastinating, part ways with Renney

Tom Renney, Kelly Buchberger

Edmonton Oilers’ head coach Tom Renney, left, listens to assistant coach Kelly Buchberger after the Vancouver Canucks scored their second goal during the third period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Sunday Dec. 26, 2010. Vancouver won 3-2. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Darryl Dyck)


Literally seconds after I profiled Jim Matheson’s “What are the Oilers doing with Tom Renney?” piece in the Edmonton Journal, the club announced Renney was out as head coach:

Renney Tweet

Renney will finishing his two-year tenure as head coach with a 57-85-22 record and back-to-back last place finishes in the Northwest Division (the team finished 29th overall in 2011-12, 30th in 2010-11.)

No word yet on the status of associate coach Ralph Kruger or assistants Steve Smith, Kelly Buchberger and Fred Chabot.

As for potential Renney replacements? Don’t be surprised to hear former Calgary Flames bench boss Brent Sutter’s name in the mix. Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun floated the idea in mid-April:

One day after “mutually” deciding to end his three years with the Flames, Brent Sutter will, in fact, be behind a bench this spring as head coach of the Canadian entry in next month’s world championships.

While it is no doubt a great opportunity to bolster his stellar international coaching resume, it also may also act as an audition of sorts. After all, Team Canada’s GM is Edmonton Oilers President of Hockey Ops Kevin Lowe, and the Oilers will very likely be in need of a new head coach soon.

Also worth noting that Team Canada was loaded with Oilers -- Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Devan Dubnyk (Sutter coached the Nuge in Red Deer two seasons ago, too.)