Peter Chiarelli was fired as general manager of the Boston Bruins on April 15, but it took him just nine days to find a new job.
The Edmonton Oilers announced at a press conference Friday that they have hired Chiarelli to be their president of hockey operations and general manager. Edmonton is the third team Chiarelli has worked for in his NHL career.
Chiarelli is a good fit for Edmonton, which has a roster full of talented young forwards. That group is expected to be bolstered by coveted prospect Connor McDavid with the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NHL draft.
The goal for Chiarelli in Edmonton is the same as it was in 2006 when the Bruins hired him: return the Stanley Cup to a franchise that hasn’t tasted championship success in many years.
Boston had just finished 13th in the Eastern Conference and taken Phil Kessel fifth overall in the 2006 draft when Chiarelli took over. Through free-agent signings, draft picks and trades that acquired players such as Nathan Horton, Mark Recchi, Johnny Boychuk, Tyler Seguin, Dougie Hamilton, Andrew Ference, Adam McQuaid, Rich Peverley and Chris Kelly, Chiarelli assembled a roster that won the 2011 Stanley Cup Final and ended the Bruins’ 39-year title drought.
Chiarelli is going into a great situation with Edmonton in regard to the number of quality assets throughout the organization. He has a good young core already assembled, as well as pieces that could be traded to address the team’s most glaring weaknesses on the blue line and in net.
The Oilers have managed assets poorly, haven’t drafted well beyond Round 1 and have been unable to construct a roster that plays a responsible, structured defensive game since they made a surprise run to the 2006 Stanley Cup Final. Adding a smart executive such as Chiarelli to the management team is a good step forward in Edmonton’s quest to become an elite team in the near future.
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