March 18 2008 02:04PM
So yeah it’s game day. And we want the Oil to run over Phoenix like they were a Miami Dolphin quarterback. We want Phoenix to leave here saying “How did we lose 11–3 in such an important game?” We want all eight of the Coyotes fans left to say “Whoa, this is such a downer. We may have to start following Iranian Jai Alai instead of hockey.”
In short, after tonight the Phoenix Coyotes should be disbanded in the wake of their overwhelming loss. The players would be dispersed through a reverse expansion draft, and the Mighty Oil would select Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky first overall.
Gretz of course would accept being moved to the Oilers, and the refreshing prairie air would heal his one-time ailing back and put a 25-year-old’s spring into his step. Initially brought on to consult and assist GM Kevin Lowe, he would find one day at practice that he still has the tools that make him the Great One.
“Lowesy,” he would say “I think I can still play.”
GM Lowe would jump at the chance to improve his team and would insert Gretz into the lineup that very evening. In an act of respect to the greatest hockey player of all time, the NHL would waive all rules surrounding players coming out of retirement mid season, and after the trade deadline. In a special pre-game ceremony, Gretzky’s retirement banner would be burned off the support beam at Rexall Place—you can’t have a retirement banner for an active hockey player.
During his first game back in copper and blue, Gretz would be amazed to find that the clock had been rolled back 20 odd years, and would shake his head sadly at the new RBK Edge Oilers jerseys and their snug fit. But even when wearing the worst Oilers jersey in franchise history number 99 can still skate and dangle and would have four assists on a four-goal night for Jarret Stoll.
Interviewed after game Stoll would comment “Yeah, I felt a lot better out there tonight. Before the game, Gretz provided me with a few of his tears in a jar. It’s well known that Gretzky tears can cure concussions.”
The Oil would close out the season undefeated, and would later go on to return to the Cup Finals for the second time in three years. By this point, Conn Smythe-lock Gretzky would have a league-leading 42 points in a mere 12 games, as the Oil would not have lost a game since the Coyotes untimely collapse and Gretzky’s dramatic return to the game. The Oilers would of course win the Stanley Cup and Whyte Avenue and most of Edmonton south of the North Saskatchewan River would be burned to the ground in celebration.
Ducks defenceman Chris Pronger would watch sadly on TV in an Anaheim sports bar, unrecognized—just as he wants it—as the Oilers are driven about town in solid gold cars during their Stanley Cup parade.
“Why? Why did I leave Edmonton and become such a douchebag?” he would lament while crossing the street to get into his car. It is at that point that he is struck by a car driven by coach Craig MacTavish, GM Kevin Lowe and newly-named Oilers captain Wayne Gretzky.
MacT, driving, would look distainfully out the window and remark, “Payback’s a bitch ain’t it, Chris?”
Gretzky would nod, and adjust his 2008 Stanley Cup ring. Then the three would drive off into a smog-filled Anaheim sunset before returning home to Oil Country.
Or maybe the Oil win 3–2 tonight to pull within five points of 8th.