May 05 2008 10:53AM
So we’re checking the news at the Oilers News page here at the Nation. It pulls in news articles about anything related to the Oilers from over 30 newspapers around North America. We used to hunt around everywhere for Oilers News, and now can go to one place and save precious time so that we have more precious time to uh... hmm.
Anyway shameless self-promotion aside, we came across a troubling article about our “Future Norris Candidate” Joni Pitkannen. Apparently Pitkannen hurt himself working out in the gym and has left North America for Finland, screwing his National Team over in the process. Finnish Coach Doug Shedden, obviously thinks Pitkanen pulled out of the Worlds because of his contract status.
"When guys are in contract years, they break a thumbnail and they hurt a bit more," he said. "I don't know if the commitment was totally there. I didn't see a lot of commitment in practice. You don't want to put a gun to anybody's head to play for their country in the world championship."
Is this the kind of guy we want to QB the Oilers for the next five years? The Oiler backfield is already blessed with one high-priced prima donna defenceman. Are two really necessary? The statement “You don't want to put a gun to anybody's head to play for their country in the world championship” is particularly troubling. One has to wonder about the level of commitment a player will bring on a Sunday Afternoon matinee game in February if he can’t even get up for representing his homeland at the World Championship.
$5 mil for a guy who won’t even go to the Worlds? This decreases his value in our mind.