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Coach Knoblauch sends a bold message to Ken Holland

Published December 17, 2023 at 5:39 PM
After winning eight straight games, the Edmonton Oilers have come back down to earth with two consecutive losses at home. Still just out of a playoff spot with a record of 13-14-1, the Oilers urgency to turn things around and start consistently winning games hasn't diminished after their impressive win streak, and now, head coach Kris Knoblauch seems to be sending a message to the front office.

Despite being signed just this offseason by GM Ken Holland, veteran Connor Brown is barely contributing anything to the team, and Knoblauch's actions reflect that. At today's practice, Knoblauch demoted Brown down to the third line from the second.

Through 22 games this season, Brown has only one pitiful assist and point on the year, going along with a -10 rating - and a $3.225M bonus that counts against the salary cap for next year. His play has been particularly awful, and that's even discounting the expectations set by his hefty contract.

Brown's one area of contribution to the team has been the penalty kill, and even that role has been diminishing in recent games. Despite being expected to fill that role, Brown ranks fifth among forwards in ice time on the penalty kill.

Throughout his struggles and in the face of his high price tag, coach Knoblauch is sending a strong message to Ken Holland and the front office that Connor Brown is no longer playable, or at least no where near the worth of his contract. His diminishing role and place on the team under his coaching tenure makes that clear. Now, it'll be up to GM Ken Holland - or his clear successor in Jeff Jackson - to make a decision on how to move forward with Brown's salary on the books.
December 17   |   878 answers
Coach Knoblauch sends a bold message to Ken Holland

What should the Oilers do with Brown?

Trade him asap44851 %
It doesn't matter, we can't get rid of him43049 %
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