Monday, August 13, 2007

Rob Daum joins Oilers coaching staff

Looks like the Oilers have found their replacement for departed assistant coach/absent-minded doodler Craig Simpson, announcing today that former University of Alberta Golden Bears head coach Rob Daum has signed a one-year contract with the club.

For Daum, who also spent two years as head coach of the AHL's Houston Aeros, this will be his NHL coaching debut.

Ke
vin Lowe had this to say in the release on edmontonoilers.com: “Rob brings a solid coaching background with him to the Oilers. He has been successful at every level he has coached, whether it be in the AHL, the CIS or in the WHL and we are looking forward to adding Rob’s expertise to our coaching staff.”

Calling Daum "successful at every level" may be a bit of a stretch, considering that he parted ways with the Aeros this April after coaching them to a last-in-their-division, 27-43-4-6 finish in his second year at the helm. Still, all that losing should help acclimatize him nicely to his new role with the Oilers, and I have fond memories of the guy from my university years.

At first cursory glance, seems like a perfectly acceptable hiring. Maybe one of my blogmates has a moment to offer a more in-depth analysis.

36 comments:

Andy Grabia said...

Good hiring, I'd say. I'm always for hiring Bears coaches. It's not just talented players that makes that program such a success.

Anonymous said...

Too bad the only picture available was apparently a mugshot.

James Mirtle said...

Good hiring. It's nice to see CIS guys getting a chance to move up, and Daum led the Aeros to a dominant season in Year 1.

He's got a good reputation as someone who works with young players and develops them, but I'm not sure exactly what the problem was last season in Houston. Apparently it wasn't so much a firing as a mutual parting of ways.

Pleasure Motors said...

Here's hoping he can coach a powerplay.

Scarlett said...

I would have preferred someone with NHL experience. I'm not totally impressed with this hiring but it's a one year deal, so that's good to see.

Rod said...

Getting Daum sounds good to me.

Apparently MacTavish and Moores will coach the PP. Daum's responsibilities will mostly involve game-planning against each team (going through video, etc.), a role Huddy had last year. With Daum taking that on, Huddy will have more time with the D (considering the personnel change-over alone, they're going to need it).

Anonymous said...

Nothing against Mr. Daum, but it isn't this a situation where if the Oilers had had an AHL affiliate the last few years someone there could have moved up to Edmonton and Daum could have moved to the Oil's AHL team. That would have let him leverage a bit more of his AHL experience and let him learn the younger Oiler personnel before moving to the show.

Andy Grabia said...

I would have preferred someone with NHL experience.

They got someone with NHL experience. His name is Billy Moores. He moves up, and Daum does the game planning and such. I imagine he'll run the rookie camp like Moores did too.

Lanny McD said...

Moores has an important job, one that demands NHL-calibre experience. I don't see why you Oilers fans should be celebrating someone jumping a level on the learning curve in order to fill Moores's crucial slot.

Edmonton's coaching staff is looking rougher than ever this year.

Paul said...

As someone who has probably spent more time watching rob daum than anyone on this board, I'm in favour of his hiring. His hockey knowledge is very strong, and he's always struck me as an all-around coach; a guy who could diagram a powerplay or run the defence through drills. I've always been impressed when talkign to him, which is a rare thing amongst CIS coaches, even a group as prestigious as those at the U of A.

And Mirtle's right, Daum was very successful his first year in Houston. This year had a lot to do with losing talent to the big club, and Daum was fired, but seemingly wanted to go anyways.

POint being, I like the move, especially as he slides into Billy Moores' spot. Daum's the kind of guy who's too knowledgable and respectable to be a detriment to a team, regardless of his experience.

Pleasure Motors said...

Edmonton's coaching staff is looking rougher than ever this year.

Fuck, we really can't do anything right, can we?

Not that I usually have anything against excessive negativity when it comes to the Oilers future, but c'mon: he's an assistant coach. We're going to start bitching about not bringing up our assistant coaches right?

Besides, it's not like he's Marty McSorely's brother or something: he coached what was essentially the most dominant team in the CIS during his tenure.

And anyway, precisely which step is he missing between being the head coach of an AHL team and assistant coaching an NHL team? Playing for the Oilers in the early '90s?

Lanny McD said...

The rampant irony, of course, is that you people would be strangling Lowe's throat right now IF he had a connection to the Oilers, without regard to his merits.

But I've looked at his merits, and his merits don't tell me anything about handling NHL-level game planning. Does he know what to look for? Does he have the vision to deconstruct and reconstruct opposing game plans, spot and exploit weaknesses, and figure out how to run circles around elite players with the C-grade level of forwards the Oilers have? There is absolutely no evidence that Daum is up to this task, especially given his fiasco of an AHL season.

Just because this guy isn't a patronage pick doesn't mean this guy is at all qualified.

I see this as the next in a long line of Oilers disasters: the Pronger trade, loss of Peca/Samsonov/Spacek, the Moreau injury, the Smyth trade, the horrid signings of Souray and Penner, and now appointing a guy with not much other than junior varsity experience to be the mastermind behind game strategies.

mike w said...

There is absolutely no evidence that Daum is up to this task

Except running one of the best University hockey teams in the country.

I'm happy with any move that gives Charlie Huddy more time to work the defence (apparently Huddy was also doing double duty with pre-game scouting last year), and as long as the NHL doesn't implement a salary cap for coaches I don't see how this hiring can be another in a long list of disasters that includes the Pronger trade.

Pleasure Motors said...

I see this as the next in a long line of Oilers disasters

I hardly think the hiring of an assistant coach, no matter who it is, can qualify in any way as a disaster, unless Daum crawls on top of the Jumbotron and strafes section 205 on opening night. Rob Daum will not be the difference between another Cup run and a lottery pick for the Ducks.

now appointing a guy with not much other than junior varsity experience to be the mastermind behind game strategies.

Right, except the two seasons in the AHL, one of which was pretty good. And, once again, his "junior varsity" experience was coaching arguably the most dominating CIS hockey team of his era. And, one more time: he's the ASSITANT fucking coach (and the most junior one, at that). I doubt MacTavish (or Huddy or Moores) will be rubber stamping any plans to use Ales Hemsky exclusively as a penalty killer or use an all-defenseman lineup.

There's legitimate worry, and then there's just picking on a team while they're down.

Doogie said...

I dunno, I read his coaching timeline, and I don't think he's missed a single step. Goes back 25 years to the Edmonton Minor Hockey Association, then Junior A, the Dub, U of A, the AHL, and now the NHL. Bottom line: he's earned his shot, so stop bitching, you retarded naysayers.

deltamike said...

" you people would be strangling Lowe's throat right now "

As opposed to the other body parts commonly strangled?

Steve said...

And anyway, precisely which step is he missing between being the head coach of an AHL team and assistant coaching an NHL team? Playing for the Oilers in the early '90s?

Bam!

As opposed to the other body parts commonly strangled?

Also bam!

I'm totally unqualified to have an opinion on the hiring, but it strikes me that, among people who are qualified to have opinions, the ones who think it's a good one are cleaning the floor with the ones who think it's a bad one in this debate. The logical extension of arguing that teams shouldn't hire junior assistant coaches without NHL experience is that, assuming all teams are smart, there will eventually be no coaches with NHL experience.

Anonymous said...

If Assistant coaches are so unimportant then why did Oil fans celebrate the departure of Simpson so much? Obviously, they're NOT interchangeable parts. Second, I'm not saying Daum is unqualified, I'm saying if the Oil had their own AHL team they'd have a better sense if Daum was going to fit into their organization, thats all. Its just another example of how the EIG or whoever suggested that the Oilers didn't need an AHL team of their own screwed up. Now the Oil is playing catch up with other teams in their division: christ, the Canucks have an AHL AND and ECHL team.

Stan the Caddy said...

So what I can gather from this thread is that those opposed think Daum is unqualified because the Oilers didn't have their own farm system last year? Seems like a pretty silly reason to dispute his hiring. The guy has two years of AHL experience, and because it wasn't with Oilers' prospects (most of whom will likely not make the team) those two years are irrelevant? I've seen bigger leaps before (say... Don Hay: dub to NHL head coach) so I don't see how this could be a disaster.

and his merits don't tell me anything about handling NHL-level game planning. Does he know what to look for? Does he have the vision to deconstruct and reconstruct opposing game plans, spot and exploit weaknesses, and figure out how to run circles around elite players with the C-grade level of forwards the Oilers have?

Ummm, the guy hasn't been coaching softball for two decades. It's not like the NHL is a different sport than the CIS or AHL (C-grade level of forwards). It's not tough to look at the opposition and figure out their strengths and weaknesses, hell I can do it pretty well from my couch. Time will tell if this is a good hiring, but there's nothing in his qualifications that says he doesn't belong.

Lanny McD said...

If Assistant coaches are so unimportant then why did Oil fans celebrate the departure of Simpson so much? Obviously, they're NOT interchangeable parts.

BAM!

Anonymous said...

think Daum is unqualified because the Oilers didn't have their own farm system last year?

Again, no that isn't what I'm saying. I'm saying: 1) Its a really bad idea not to have had an AHL team the last few years because you develop coaches as well as players. 2)Daum may be qualified but we don't know to the extent that we might if he was in the Oilers system. This, of course, isn't the crime of the century, but winning organizations are known and reknown for stressing these admittedly small details.

the weaz said...

Whether or not this Daum fella is a good hire is a moot point. The man is hired. He's only signed for one year. Even a casual fan can tell that the Oilers aren't likely to have a stellar season, we're in a rebuilding process. Now is the perfect time to hire a man like this. We don't know his weaknesses as an NHL coach we can only look at his resume, which is damn impressive, and say "heck yeah, let's give him a shot". There is no more risk in a hire such as Daum as there would be any other coach regardless of their resume.

Anonymous said...

If Assistant coaches are so unimportant then why did Oil fans celebrate the departure of Simpson so much?

I don't think anyone is arguing that assistant coaches are unimportant.

As for Simpson, I think he gets a bit of a bad rap since no one truly knew what his responsibilities were, but having an endlessly bad power play leads to fair comment from fans who want to see some change on the bench.

Lanny McD said...

I don't think anyone is arguing that assistant coaches are unimportant.

Except for Pleasure Motors, who seems to think that Daum can play with a set of crayolas and Play Dough all day and it wouldn't do dick all to hurt the Oilers:

"Not that I usually have anything against excessive negativity when it comes to the Oilers future, but c'mon: he's an assistant coach. We're going to start bitching about not bringing up our assistant coaches right?"

"I hardly think the hiring of an assistant coach, no matter who it is, can qualify in any way as a disaster... And, one more time: he's the ASSITANT fucking coach (and the most junior one, at that)."


Emphasis added.

Chris! said...

Lanny, what's the point you're making here again?

lance mcd said...

taht teh COILERS suck!!! LOL

Pleasure Motors said...

As you boldy emphasized, Lanny, I said there's no way Daum is going to be a disaster. Because he's not.

I didn't, though, say he would be unimportant; I just pointed out that comparing hiring an assistant coach to oh, say, the Pronger trade, is slightly histronic. Simpson, to the best of my knowledge, had prety much direct control over the powerplay, and no one else on the coaching staff seemed to question his methods, hence I'm glad to see him go. Daum will be reviewing game film and suggesting strategies, which will then be implemented by the rest of the coaching staff.

Or, to put it more simply: FALMES SUCK!

Doogie said...

So tell me how coaching our own AHL team would tell us anything more than coaching someone else's? We can all make pretty intelligent guesses, based on who was down there and who was on the big club, what Daum had to work with those two years. Seems to me like nitpicking for the sake of nitpicking.

I mean, let's take an objective look at the risk-benefit analysis here:

Risk
--Possibility that past experience fails to translate to the NHL. It's happened before, and seems to be the crux of the naysayers' arguments.
--Possibility that the hiring overall fails to improve the coaching of the club, despite whatever assets he brings. It's unlikely, if for no other reason than Huddy gets more time with the D, but again, entirely possible.
--Possibility that Huddy was flat-out better at the game-tape analysis for whatever reason. Did Daum do much of that at U of A or in the AHL?

Benefit
--Over 25 years of experience coaching every level from the squirts to the pros.
--Possibility that, with Huddy getting more time with the D, he can mold them a little more, figure them out, and make more optimal use of them.
--He brings a fresh perspective, joining Billy Moores as possibly the only two off-ice personnel in all of Hockey Operations who weren't coached by Glen Sather. (Not necessarily a good argument, but one that seems to carry a lot of weight in these parts)
--He's only on a one-year deal, so even if he is somehow a "disaster," the Oilers can wash their hands of him at the end of the season.

Unknown
--Moores and MacT taking over the power play might help, might hurt, hard to say. Will they alter their strategy to focus on Hemsky's strengths down low, or will they play to the strengths of the D up high? I think traditionally, the bombs-away strategy was focussed around Smyth, but with Souray, Pitkanen, Stoll, and Tarnstrom, there may be a new reason to do the same damned thing again. Regardless, that's something we can really only figure out once the season starts

Now, what am I missing here? So far, I'm seeing a few remote possibilities on the "Risk" side, and a bunch of greater likelihoods on the "Benefit" side. When you weigh the respective probabilities alongside the actual arguments, I think it's very hard to argue this is an unnecessarily dangerous move, but I'm open to alternatives, if someone can present a more concrete, obvious risk that I've somehow missed in all of this.

the weaz said...

Nope, I think you pretty much have it there Doogie.

Anonymous said...

Daum-daum-daum-daum...

Daum-daum-daum-daum.

Etc.

Alex said...

..am I the only one a little confused that the Flames fan is calling our coaching staff "rougher" than ever based on the hiring of an assistant coach?

This is the team that just hired fucking Mike Keenan.

Chris! said...

The Falmes fans who troll this blog seem to be largely unaware of irony.

Lanny McD said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Chris! said...

Hey Lanny, check it out. I just deleted you for being an asshole. Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule of spittle-filled slapfights on CalPuck to drop by and straighten us out.

Jim said...

Aw, what did he say? :)

McLea said...

Ya chris!, quit being such a buzz kill. This is a goddamn thread about an assistant coach who'll be spending the year reviewing game film (which, of course, didn't keep the masses from sharing their uninformed opinion). There's nothing worth salvaging here.