Craig MacTavish introduced as Oilers general manager

Bruce Bennett

Craig MacTavish was formally introduced as the new general manager of the Edmonton Oilers on Monday afternoon.

Edmonton Oilers president Kevin Lowe formally introduced Craig MacTavish as the fifth general manager in team history on Monday afternoon. In addition, Scott Howson was announced as the senior vice president of hockey operations.

Lowe explained the decision to fire former general manager Steve Tambellini occurred because the organization needed to make changes. He was informed of his dismissal on Sunday.

MacTavish thanked Lowe and owner Daryl Katz for the opportunity. He also expressed his trust in Howson and cited their years of work together. MacTavish believes there are two fundamental strengths to the Edmonton franchise, which are the team's ownership group and its bright future. Included in this future is the team's youth, the pending new arena and the city's economy.

MacTavish made it clear that he hopes to improve the team's depth. He believes the organization is ready to make bold decisions and that he is open to taking some risks in the hopes of improving the team. He also expressed a desire to bring in talented people with strong character traits.

This is likely the goal of most professional sports franchises. Of course, the ability to evaluate talent and character is what separates top-tier franchises from perennial lottery teams. MacTavish is aware of this and stated that his ability to properly act as the Oilers manager will come in his actions, not his words.

However, some of his words were concerning. The same could be said of Lowe's.

MacTavish acted as the team's coach from 2000-09 before being relieved by Tambellini. Some have questioned whether the Oilers' search for Tambellini's successor was too narrow in scope and that the franchise is stuck in an 'old boy's club' kind of mentality.

During the media availability, a question was asked about why the franchise believes the guys who made the current mess the Oilers are in will be able to clean it up. MacTavish stated that he believed the current mess the team is in is partly due to the Oilers dynasty from the 80s and early 90s. Lowe jumped in and stated that the team was one period away from winning the Stanley Cup seven years ago (in addition to referencing the amount of Stanley Cups he won as a player as an indication of his ability to evaluate talent).

This kind of explanation doesn't add up.

The press conference wasn't overly encouraging that the franchise fully understands where they are in their development. In fact, a good portion appeared to be more spin than substance. MacTavish's insistence that he is willing to take bold risks seemed like a weaker choice of words than saying something along the lines of making calculated decisions.

Of course, as MacTavish himself stated, his success will be determined based upon the actions he takes, not the words he spoke on the day he was hired.

More in the NHL:

Complete Frozen Four coverage

An NHL rink broken down: Sens edition

Eric Wellwood’s horrifying injury

Why puck possession matters

The best of our hockey network

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.