And, it didn't really happen because Owen didn't give the board the chance to fire him. Instead, he quit when he got wind of the foundation's desire. The whole thing really popped off when Owen and Derek -- the pair have been contentious lately -- fought in front of Avery. "I'm through looking like an idiot while you all lie to me!" he shouted. Derek hit back: "You do not want to get into who's responsible for all of this," referring to the fact that Owen was the one ultimately responsible for Mark and Lexie's deaths and the hospital spiraling into a mess after the settlement. Before storming out, Owen told Avery directly: "I can make this decision easier for you: I quit." Cristina tired to stop Owen just before he drove off in his awesome Dodge Ram 1500. "I'm done," he told her. "I should have been done a long time ago."
Derek and Owen weren't done yet, though. I would circle back there later, but it's worth just pointing out now that Owen was eventually asked back as the chief and Derek even showed up to sort of apologize and make nice with him. Cristina was the one who helped that along, after the hospital descended into chaos. "This place doesn't run without Owen, Derek, and you know it," she told him. "You say you forgive him" -- she continued, about the plane crash -- "but you don't." When Owen and Derek finally did chat, Derek admitted, "I'm pissed at Mark." It was a bromantic moment like no other, and these two really, finally, seem on the road to recovery.
But back to all that chaos at the hospital for a minute. Without Owen, it really was a huge mess, compounded by the fact that the hospital's transplant coordinator was out, as well as half of the nursing staff. There were near-constant traffic jams in the ORs, and at first, it seemed like Avery wasn't going to step up to the plate, even despite his mother trying to give him a pep talk. "Put on your game face," she told him before a meeting with suits that he didn't want to attend.
It's a slight bit unclear what made Jackson finally swing into action and actually make some smart decisions around Seattle Grace. But there was a clear moment where he finally just started telling people what to do. And you know who predicted that he'd finally pull it together? His mother, Catherine. "Decisions are like building blocks," she told Webber, who was questioning whether Avery was running the hospital into the ground. "He'll make one, and then another one will follow." Bailey's reaction to Avery's newfound power was the best, naturally: "Well you heard the man," she barked, "he's the boss, now move!"
NEXT: "We are now officially a hospital run by doctors."