Flames fire Coach Greg Gilbert

DENVER, Dec. 3 (UPI) -- In the midst of a disappointing season, the Calgary Flames on Tuesday fired coach Greg Gilbert.

After being active in free agency and acquiring Chris Drury from the Colorado Avalanche prior to the season, the Flames were hoping to contend for a playoff spot. Calgary has not made the playoffs since the 1995 season.


The Flames have stumbled badly, posting a 6-13-3-3 record and are in last place in the Northwest Division. They are 1-10

1 in their last 12 games.

Gilbert's fate may have been sealed after the Flames lost their first four games of a five-game road trip. During that span, they were outscored, 22-8

To replace Gilbert, the Flames named Al MacNeil coach on an interim basis.

Named coach late in the 2001 season, Gilbert finished his tenure in Calgary with a 42-56-17-6 record.

Gilbert became the second coach to be fired in the last three days, joining San Jose's Darryl Sutter, who was dismissed on Sunday.

The Flames also fired assistant coach Brad McCrimmon, but retained the services of fellow assistants Brian Skrudland and Rob Cookson.


MacNeil, who was the club's coach when the franchise relocated from Atlanta in 1980, has been with the organization for 23 years and had been serving as an assistant to General Manager Craig Button.

MacNeil's first assignment behind the bench comes Tuesday night at Colorado. He has a career coaching record of 134-108-53.

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