Steve Simmons writes that there is less pressure on Oilers coach Dallas Eakins after his team has won three straight games but prior to that the Oilers were considering a coaching change and were “sniffing around” the idea of Mark Messier filling that role. (Toronto Sun)
Messier is currently working with the Oilers as a consultant and in talking about his role, Messier said that he is “available” for anything that the organization needs. He added that he told former teammates Kevin Lowe (Oilers President) and Craig MacTavish (Oilers GM) that he is available to them 24/7 for whatever they need. (Oilers)
He said that he speaks with the players, coaches and helps out with certain decisions. (Oilers)
Messier has been linked to the Oilers as a potential head coach in the past.
Asked about the rumors, Bob McKenzie said on Edmonton radio today that he had no specific knowledge that the Oilers were considering a change but added that Messier has probably indicated to people that he would like to be a head coach. (Nichols on Hockey)
Mark Messier taped an episode of Centerstage with Michael Kay today and the NY Post reports Messier says that he has no hard feelings towards the Rangers over being passed over for the head coaching position.
Messier said that he will be part of a group of people who will help introduce the new Madison Square Garden on Friday.
He said that there is a bond between him and the Rangers that will be there until the day he dies.
Messier said that he thought he was ready to take over as head coach of the Rangers and ready for those responsibilities and was more disappointed than hurt when he was passed over.
The Post notes that Messier mentioned many times that he has no grudge or animosity towards the organization.
7:42PM: On HNIC, Glenn Healy said of Messier joining the Oilers, “The Rangers mistake is a gift for the Oilers. He isn’t going to jump in full-time, he will be doing things where you meet with a Danny Dekeyser and if you have Mark Messier in your living room and you don’t think that the Edmonton Oilers are a great organization you aren’t paying attention.
1:42PM: John Shannon tweets that Messier will do some scouting and project work for the Oilers. He also says that Messier wants to stay involved in case an NHL job that he wants becomes available.
10:51PM: According to Elliotte Friedman, on Hockey Night in Canada’s Hot Stove, Mark Messier is joining the Edmonton Oilers as a consultant.
Friedman said “Mark Messier was in Edmonton last week for an event and word is he will be re-joining the organization as, I think, some kind of consultant moving forward.”
Messier joins Kevin Lowe, President, and Craig MacTavish, GM, in the Oilers organization.
While in Edmonton for a sports memorabilia dinner and to see Kevin Lowe and Craig MacTavish, Mark Messier spoke with the Edmonton media, via Oilers Now on 630 CHED, and the topic of his future in the NHL was brought up.
Messier was asked if he intended to get back into the NHL after his project with the Kingsbridge Armory is finished and Messier said, “I do, for sure.”
He added that he took this opportunity to because he has been involved for the past three-years and the area means a lot to him.
Messier said that the process is getting the proper approvals, getting through the proper votes and he is very encouraged by the progress being made.
Kypreos said that it wasn’t a surprise and that Messier was ready to take on a new challenge and Glen Sather wasn’t ready to promote Messier to head coach at this time.
He adds that if the Rangers were in a different position and a younger/rebuilding team, Messier could have been the perfect hire but since the Rangers are in a small window where they think they can win the Stanley Cup, it wasn’t the right time.
People want someone with a resume or experience, more than what he has done for Hockey Canada, it’s a timing thing. If the team was younger it would be a perfect fit, but right now it isn’t. They are in a small window
Glen Sather told Katie Strang that he and Messier are parting on “great terms” and said in his statement that Messier will always be part of the Rangers family.
Adam Rotter: Without knowing the extent of Messier’s role as “Special Assistant” to Glen Sather, it’s hard to know how much Messier will be missed. It was always nice to have Mark Messier around the team, but with that came a certain amount of pressure and talk about where he would ultimately end up. He was a long-shot to take over for Glen Sather as GM but I still consider him the front runner to take over for Sather as President when Sather decides to retire.
In the NY Post, Mark Messier spoke with Larry Brooks and said that it was Glen Sather who approached him about the Rangers head coaching position after John Tortorella was fired.
Messier said that after taking some time to discuss the idea with his family, he told Sather that he feels like he has the right qualities to bring the Rangers to the next level, Sather should go through the process and hire the person he feels is right for the job, even if it isn’t him.
Messier said that he isn’t bitter at all and was considering taking on a bigger role with the Kingsbridge complex for a while.
Mark Messier has released a statement announcing that he is leaving the Rangers organization to to develop the Kingsbridge National Ice Center in the Bronx.
He has spent the past four seasons as a Special Assistant to President Glen Sather. The Rangers media guide said that Messier “assists President and General Manager, Glen Sather, in various on and off-ice team activities.”
Messier says that this decision had nothing to do with not being chosen as head coach and that he has no hard feelings towards Glen Sather or the Rangers organization.
In the NY Post, Larry Brooks writes that the Rangers should make Mark Messier the head coach of the Wolf Pack and allow him to gain experience running and managing his own bench so that he could one day be a more formidable candidate to become a head coach at the NHL level.
Brooks says that the team could make Ken Gernander an associate coach but he doesn’t specify whether that would be with the Rangers or the Wolf Pack.
By coaching in the AHL Messier would allow himself to expand the pool of potential teams that would hire him as the two teams who have had interest in him coaching are the teams that he has deep rooted history with and long term connections.
Brooks writes that Messier needs to understand that it wasn’t he who was passed over for the job, but that it was his lack of experience and resume in coaching that was.
Elliotte Friedman wonders at CBC what the future holds for Messier and if he will take over for Sather as GM when Sather retires. Friedman says that it would be tough for Alain Vigneault to report to Messier since Messier wanted his job.
Adam Rotter: If Mark Messier truly wants to be a head coach the then this is the route he should take. The question is if Messier wants to be a head coach at the NHL level or if he wanted to coach the Rangers at this point in time. Messier can continue to work in management, eventually become the President of the team and in essence control the direction of the organization.
In the NY Post, Larry Brooks writes that there is not yet any indication of what Mark Messier will do and whether he will stay in his position as Special Assistant to Glen Sather.
7:17AM: 6/4/13: In the Ottawa Sun, Bruce Garrioch writes not to dismiss the idea of Messier becoming coach of the Rangers. He says that if Messier shows that he really wants the job and will commit to the work, he could get the job.
Garrioch writes that Glen Sather is considering Messier but that he would need a strong associate head coach with a lot of experience to run the technical aspects.
7:32PM: This afternoon on TSN Radio, Darren Dreger said “When I first approached those close to Messier there was resistance because John Tortorella had just been removed and they wanted to be respectful of Torts and wait a little bit of time before they threw Mark’s name into the mix. Only a wee bit of time, but he is in the mix. Whether he is the right man for the job, that is up for the NY Rangers management to determine, but Messier is more believable than Gretzky. I don’t think either one will get the job.”
11:34AM: Over the weekend, Elliotte Friedman reported on HNIC that Mark Messier was offered the head coaching position of the Edmonton Oilers last year and turned it down due to family reasons.
Friedman and Glenn Healy both said that Messier is seriously considering making a push for the Rangers vacant head coaching position.