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Brent Sutter doesn't have a job in the NHL, and Oilers president of hockey operations Kevin Lowe recently picked him to coach Canada at the world championship. So does that mean the writing is on the wall for Sutter to take over behind the Oilers bench?
"I don't know. He hasn't officially applied to me." Lowe told edmontonoilers.com. "He and I never had any discussions about any of that."
Sutter was let go by the Calgary Flames after the regular season.
"I don't see why he wouldn't want to coach the Edmonton Oilers, and he's a very worthwhile candidate, no question," Lowe said.
It took the Oilers over a month after the end of the regular season to make the decision not to renew the contract of Tom Renney, who had been the team's bench boss the last two seasons.
"I think there's been some criticism at the timing of us making the decision and releasing Tom," admits Lowe. "I think, if anything, it emphasized the face that we were uncertain. That's more a case in point to Tom's ability and our genuineness to having him back."
Lowe says, ideally, the Oilers will hire a new coach before the NHL draft on June 22. (jrw)