'We're not into a rebuild,' Oilers fire GM Peter Chiarelli

'We're not into a rebuild,' Oilers fire GM Peter Chiarelli

During the second intermission of their game against the Red Wings on Tuesday night, the Oilers met with president of hockey operations and general manager Peter Chiarelli and told him he was sacked.

Oilers CEO Bob Nicholson said the decision to fire Chiarelli was made prior to last night's game against the Detroit Red Wings, and the news was delivered to the GM after the second period.

Chiarelli fired head coach Todd McLellan and brought in Ken Hitchcock earlier this season but after a quick surge under Hitchcock, the Oilers have faded in recent weeks.

Moves made by Chiarelli along the way contributed to the Oilers struggling for much of the first four seasons of McDavid's career. He joined the organization in 2015, two months before the Oilers won the chance to draft Connor McDavid first overall.

Heading into the 2019 Honda NHL All-Star Weekend and their League-mandated five-day break that follows, the Oilers (23-24-3) are in seventh place in the Pacific Division with 49 points, three behind the Colorado Avalanche, who hold the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.

Keith Gretzky becomes the Oilers' fourth GM in six seasons.

He also signed Milan Lucic to a seven-year, $42 million deal at the age of 28.

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.

"We're not trading away our first (round) pick", Nicholson promised. "We'll make some trades at the deadline if they're the right trades to get us in the playoffs, but not giving away the future".

"There's something in the water here in Edmonton, we don't have it right, and we gotta get that figured out", Nicholson told the media on Wednesday morning. Hall won the Hart Trophy with the Devils a year ago. As for Spooner, Edmonton put the former Bruin and Ranger on waivers.

There is a new leadership group for the Edmonton Oilers.

And after almost 20 years of rushing young players before they're ready - organizational DNA that makes us insane - if it happens even one more time this reporter will be calling for Nicholson's head.

Chiarelli had the brilliant idea of signing Drake Caggiula out of North Dakota.

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