The Edmonton Oilers continue their methodical search for a new general manager, and at least one candidate has received a second interview. That was Mark Hunter, according to Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, who notes that there are other candidates including ones overseas taking in the U18 World Championship.
Hunter last worked in the NHL with the Toronto Maple Leafs, but returned to the OHL’s London Knights—which he owns with his brother Dale Hunter—after the team decided to promote Kyle Dubas to the GM position instead of him. He helped the Knights reach the OHL playoffs where many believed they would contend for a spot in the Memorial Cup, but the team was unfortunately knocked out after losing four straight games to the Guelph Storm in the second round.
The veteran executive was named to the Hockey Canada Program of Excellence to manage the U20 National Junior team back in March, something that apparently is not stopping him from interviewing for the Oilers’ GM role. He was adamant that he wanted the Maple Leafs role when it came open in Toronto after Lou Lamoriello was moved out of the position, and obviously would give up his spot with London and Hockey Canada to take charge of the Oilers.
Rumors swirled this week as Steve Yzerman was introduced as the new GM of the Detroit Red Wings, linking long-time executive Ken Holland with the Oilers. Cold water was quickly thrown on that by Darren Dreger of TSN though, who tweeted that Holland had withdrawn his name from consideration. Other names like Vegas Golden Knights AGM Kelly McCrimmon, Los Angeles Kings AGM Mike Futa and interim Oilers GM Keith Gretzky have all been linked to the job in some way, but it is not clear how many other candidate are being considered.