Washington, DC, United States (4E Sports) – The Washington Capitals have fired second-year coach Adam Oates after the team missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time in seven years.
Team owner Ted Leonsis and president Dick Patrick also announced in a release that general manager George McPhee’s contract will not be renewed.
The Capitals were 38-30-14 this season but finished three points outside the final spot for Stanley Cup Playoffs qualification in the Eastern Conference. In two seasons, Oates had a 65-48-16 record.
McPhee, in his 17th season as GM, was the architect of the Capitals’ revival, which was built around the arrival of forward Alex Ovechkin as the No. 1 pick in the 2004 NHL Draft
Under McPhee, the Capitals won seven division titles, two regular-season Eastern Conference titles, one Presidents’ Trophy and competed in the Stanley Cup Playoffs 10 times.
The Capitals haven’t advanced past the second round since 1998, when they lost in the Stanley Cup Final to the Detroit Red Wings in a four-game sweep.
“George has been a terrific, longtime executive for our franchise, and I’m grateful for his commitment to the Capitals organization for the past 17 years,” Leonsis said.
“He was a highly effective manager who is extremely well regarded within our organization and around the NHL. We have the utmost respect for him and his family and wish them nothing but the very best,” he added.
McPhee was the third-longest tenured general manager in the NHL behind Lou Lamoriello of the New Jersey Devils and Jim Rutherford of the Carolina Hurricanes, having started June 9, 1997.
Oates was named coach after Washington lost a second-round series to the New York Rangers in the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He replaced Dale Hunter.
“We are also appreciative of Adam’s efforts and thank him for his devotion, work ethic and contributions to the Capitals the past two seasons,” Leonsis said.