Happy Canada Day

Jason Gregor
July 01 2009 02:01AM

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What an interesting unofficial start to the Free Agent Frenzy.

I will state for the record that I still stand by my source, because in the time I’ve known him he has never misled me before. If it turns out that Heatley doesn’t come here, then my apologies for getting your hopes up. But know this - the Dany Heatley situation seems fishy on many levels.

For weeks and especially the last few days leading up to today it seemed many felt that his $4 million bonus/lump sum payment was due at midnight on July 1st. Now it turns out it isn’t due until the end of July 1st at 11:59:59. His contract says payment is due on July 1st, but doesn’t specify which day part. I just find it funny that for the past three weeks it has been reported in many places, including TSN, RDS, Sportsnet and both radio broadcast rights holders, as well as non-rights holders, and blogs that the deadline was at midnight Tuesday. Why would the league let their partners report this without quietly correcting them?

It seems that Heatley hasn’t completely said NO to Edmonton; rather that he’d liked to sleep on it. Reading, hearing and being directly told this explanation leads me to believe that he never thought Edmonton was a realistic destination, and that another team would step up, so he never gave it a lot of thought. Then the realization comes that Edmonton is the most interested and offers the best package, so he says yes, albeit briefly, and then decides he needs to think about it.

If that is the case and he wakes up in the morning and feels Edmonton is a good fit, then Oiler fans won’t care. They have been through much worse in recent memory. But if he decides he isn’t interested in coming here, then Senators Fans will suddenly find a great many Citizens of the OilersNation in the refund line at the Dany Heatley fan club. Perhaps Heatley didn't believe Edmonton would be his only choice?

A short memo to Dany Heatley

Why list the Oilers as a team you would go to in the first place? When you submitted the list didn’t you realize then, that everyone one of those teams could be your next team. Shouldn’t you have prepared yourself for that?

No one wins if he decides to veto the deal.

The Senators will be left scrambling trying to find a partner, especially if he doesn’t decide by 10 a.m. MST when free agency begins. The Oilers will have three players who knew they were on the verge of being dealt, but they will remain and play for an organization that was willing to part with them. And the Oilers will have to decide by 10 a.m. if they will pursue a UFA or wait for Heatley to decide if he’d like to play for them.

Oiler fans will be feeling rejected once again and wondering why?

Even if Heatley gets dealt to another team that he prefers, he will still be looked upon as a selfish guy who quit on one team and then refused to go to one that really wanted him. If he wakes up tomorrow and decides E-town is not right for him, I’ll take my lumps from those who will question my accuracy, that is part of the job, but this deal seemed too close to evaporate at the last minute.

Bob McKenzie, who is more connected than anyone, and extremely accurate had the names in a PROJECTED deal earlier than anyone. Normally when he makes a projection it comes true. Bob never once CONFIRMED this deal, but he isn’t one to toss out names and then not have something pan out very often. I know of a great many deals that have supposedly fallen apart at the last second, but in most of those cases the names of people involved were never reported.

Why did all the names get out this time?

And if it wasn’t almost a done deal how come no one from the Oilers denied it?

If everyone thought the deadline was tonight, and there was never a report of a trade with the Rangers before the deadline, if they get a deal done on Wednesday how will that make the NHL look?  And what if Heatley sleeps on it and decides he wants to be an Oiler, will Oiler fans still be upset?

It was an interesting and for me an educational start to the free agent frenzy. Things might not always seem as they appear, even when you are certain of it.

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 DonovanMD
July 01 2009, 02:16AM
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I would say the Oil won't be involved in much in the next few days UFA wise, but after today I have no frickin clue.

People will forget all about it Gregor, you're not the first media guy to break a story only to have it go sour. Keep up the good work.

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#2 erixon
July 01 2009, 02:16AM
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Gregor,

Do you know if the Heatley deal is just awaiting his decision. Like if the deal is in place, and they are waiting for him, is it possible that teams can even negotiate other deals involving heatley or does this wait until the Edmonton deal falls through? Hope this makes sense, its late. haha

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#3 DaGongshow
July 01 2009, 02:21AM
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I think this whole thing is fishy. I truly believe that there is a 3 way in the works and has been there from the start. Part of the trade was just leaked early. Maybe I am just trying to rationalize things.

Personally I would love to see:

To San Jose:

Heatley

Souray (I love him, but heard he wants to be closer to child)

Horcoff

To Edmonton:

Either: Thornton or Marleau

Cheechoo

Clowe

Not sure of salary implications, but I like to think it looks ok. Tambo would than have to do that trade to get Tootoo outta Nashville. We would be unstoppable with the Cheechoo Train and the Tootoo Train! Woooohooooo!

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#4 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 02:34AM
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On the upside I think our offer is tough to beat personally, NYR could offer what really? plus if NYR and us put similar deals on table why would sens accept NYR offer when same conference...seems to me we are still in goodshape.

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#5 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 02:36AM
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I think heater was hoping for another team when he said ill think about it but in the end would he wave if we were the only offer OTT agreed on probably furthermore heatley is endangering what is left of his reputation how much before no-one wants him?

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#6 Jason Gregor
July 01 2009, 02:41AM
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erixon wrote:

Gregor, Do you know if the Heatley deal is just awaiting his decision. Like if the deal is in place, and they are waiting for him, is it possible that teams can even negotiate other deals involving heatley or does this wait until the Edmonton deal falls through? Hope this makes sense, its late. haha

Any team can negotiate with Ottawa, and the Rangers are. There is nothing to stop them, since the deadline was supposedly midnight on July 2nd all along.

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#7 Mikey
July 01 2009, 02:50AM
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What a circus this has become. Someone isn't telling the whole truth.....

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#8 oilerzz
July 01 2009, 02:52AM
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i think its unfair that this organization ( once proud) has to take another un deserved shot like it did today to have this story break ( shame on the sources without being accurate) the fans of the oilers deserve better and for this to happen really is a sad state .... lets hope the oiler players involved understand that it was a business decision and not personal and can overcome the fact that they were traded away and then not traded away but understand that sometimes the best deal is the one that didnt get finalized ... wow tough times ahead for oiler nation and not deserved !!!!!

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#9 Mike from Hardware
July 01 2009, 02:52AM
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I just can't wait for the tell-all book one of the players, agents, GMs, or media members involved closely with the deal writes 10 years down the road finally has a chapter involving this.

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#10 DanMan
July 01 2009, 02:55AM
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Completely unrelated but what do you think about this, Jason?

Tom Gilbert to the Pens straight up for Brooks Orpik.

Gonchar doesn't seem to have much left in the tank, other than Letang there's no other proven puck mover on Pittsburgh. The contracts are almost identical. I think Orpik has 4 yrs left at $4 mil per and Gilbert's about the same.

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#11 oilertooth
July 01 2009, 02:57AM
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@ Jason Gregor:

long time reader, 1st time poster

Gregor,

I am with you on the fishiness of the situation. If you look at it from Murrays POV, maybe he has been setting up Tamby as the pawn this whole time to get the rangers to pony up a deal that he wants...tamby showed his cards too soon and the market for heatley is now set: 3 capable nhl roster players and he has 'found' 24 new hours to keep driving the price up...

We should focus on betts, jagr, and samuelsson

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#12 DaGongshow
July 01 2009, 02:59AM
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Bottom line for me I guess is somehow I would like to see the Oil stay in this trade. If Heater doesn't want to come here, screw the little Pissant! If Ottawa is happy with their return, maybe we can broker what WE get back for Heatley. The fact that we can get Penner and Smid off our books is a good move. Smid has been dead to me since I heard he requested a trade out of here when he wasn't in our top six to start the year. Penner can't handle the Oil Country pressure cooker (I don't think Heatley can handle it either). Sad to see Cogs go, but I think he is too young to get over the "Yeah we traded you, but it didn't go through, we still have you as a big part of our plans for the future" speech. Maybe something with LA including JJ and Frolov or NYR involving Zheredev, Dubinsky or Callahan.

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#13 oilertooth
July 01 2009, 03:04AM
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@ DaGongshow:

the most comparable deal that the rangers could put forward would be:

roszival (salary dump ala penner) callahan (=cogliano) Korpikoski (=smid)

Wouldnt you prefer the oilers deal?

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#14 Dustin Penner's 2nd Chin
July 01 2009, 03:09AM
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Very strange turn of events. We don't know the full story, but I'll say this: -Heatley is a punk. He publicly requested a trade... but only to certain teams (NTC)... and can't even decide within those teams when the times comes to sign the papers. -This whole $4M bonus stuff is definitely fishy, especially if Tambellini was as misinformed about it as us fans were through the media. -The Oilers NEED to give the Sens an ultimatum on this deal; one that is BEFORE free agency begins at noon tomorrow. We CANNOT afford to have this Heatley cloud screwing up our UFA strategy.

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#15 spoonful
July 01 2009, 03:20AM
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One less listener for the TEAM 1260.

Amateur hour comes to Edmonton on that station.

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#16 DaGongshow
July 01 2009, 03:29AM
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spoonful wrote:

One less listener for the TEAM 1260. Amateur hour comes to Edmonton on that station.

BooHoo! Enjoy listening to 930 CJCA The Light. Should stroke your self righteous ways. You won't be missed!

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#17 DanMan
July 01 2009, 03:31AM
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spoonful, I think you're being a bit too harsh.

I was critical too, at first, but s#$t happens and guys make mistakes. The news is more instant than ever before.

Its the only all sports station in town. The Oiler coverage is much more independent than the CHEDleaders.

The new 9-12 show is great and they take lots of calls.

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#18 spoonful
July 01 2009, 03:35AM
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@ DaGongshow: At least I won't be subjected to the self righteous ways of the TEAM anymore.

Amateur hour sums them up nicely.

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#19 DanMan
July 01 2009, 03:40AM
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Gregor I have another question.

Did the names of the players involved not come out in the proposed comrie deal to Anaheim? I seem to recall Corey Perry's name being mentioned.

If this is true maybe the idea that this is payback from Murray isn't so far-fetched.

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#20 DaGongshow
July 01 2009, 03:43AM
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@ spoonful:

Comon now, Amateur hour can be fun too...especially @ Diamonds or Showgirls. :-)

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#21 Teufel
July 01 2009, 03:56AM
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Heatley would be a nice addition for the Oilers, but if he doesn't want to play here, then we're better off not having him, rather than have him come here when he doesn't really want to and sulk about it and demand another trade in 2 years.

Skip Heatley, pull Cogliano and Smid off the table and trade Penner or Nilsson for Anton Volchenkov, then pick up a different offensive player via trade/free agency.

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#22 Death Metal Nightmare
July 01 2009, 05:06AM
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a) the faux deadline event is something that has to be to addressed and elaborated on by the Senators and the league immediately - and possibly brought to legal repurcussions. this completely neutralized the Oilers from making moves on equal grounds, with parity among their peers, and were reduced to a metaphor of showing their hand at an "NHL game of poker" hours before the cards were even dealt. that is absolutely horrendous intra-league business practice. if something like this happened in the NFL, where a deadline for a bonus to kick in was announced wrong for three weeks, there would be Hell to pay. everyone knows damn well in that league when bonuses kick in - because guys are getting CUT before it happens.

b) is there anyone else in the league who is suppose to receive a bonus / advance payment today? or is this a facet specifically for Heatley's individual contract? curious if this is a common day for bonuses or not.

c) i dont even care if Heatley gets here now or not. im more upset at how completely unprofessional this whole situation was. from the league, to the Senators and on into the media. its almost as if for about 6 hours, people were acting like mindless automatons going through motions and behaviors based on a deadline that didnt exist. how philosophical. haha

d) i dont hold anything against Gregor. theres way too many circumstances here that were misunderstood by a LOT of people (including TSN - which hyped the fake midnight deadline as much as anyone).

it will be really interesting today to hear what sort of explanation this all gets - if any - and how the league could let something so comical happen.

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#23 Death Metal Nightmare
July 01 2009, 05:34AM
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oilertooth wrote:

@ Jason Gregor: long time reader, 1st time poster Gregor, I am with you on the fishiness of the situation. If you look at it from Murrays POV, maybe he has been setting up Tamby as the pawn this whole time to get the rangers to pony up a deal that he wants…tamby showed his cards too soon and the market for heatley is now set: 3 capable nhl roster players and he has ‘found’ 24 new hours to keep driving the price up… We should focus on betts, jagr, and samuelsson

Samuelsson cant even skate. the dudes a bum who was buried on a stacked team. he isnt going to help the Oilers at all with their personnel. Jagr is locked in a contract. Betts can win you 49% faceoffs and get in front of some shots for you on the 3rd/4th line.

and i doubt Murray was pulling the strings of the league, the media (the holy shrine of TSN) and the Oilers for 3 weeks. it sounds like a lot of people didnt read the language of the contract to realize when the bonus kicked in. if Murray is in this alone, leading teams on with false deadlines, he should be ousted from his job immediately by the league and the Oilers should be compensated with a Senators pick.

having this date wrong and/or non-transparent is complete bs

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#24 Chester Copperpot
July 01 2009, 05:54AM
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Oilers: I gotta know right now! Do you love me? Will you love me forever? Do you need me? Will you never leave me? Will you make me so happy for the rest of my life? Will you take me away and will you make me your Wife? I gotta know right now! Before we go any further Do you love me? Will you love me forever?

Whats it gonna be boy? Come on I can wait all night Whats it gonna be boy yes or no? Whats it gonna be boy yes or no?

Heatley: Let me sleep on it Baby, baby let me sleep on it Let me sleep on it And Ill give you an answer in the morning

--------------------------------------------

.... Anyone else feel like Edmonton just got screwed again.

Anyone else think that Edmonton just got screwed like the girl in the song?

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#25 erixon
July 01 2009, 06:11AM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

erixon wrote: Gregor, Do you know if the Heatley deal is just awaiting his decision. Like if the deal is in place, and they are waiting for him, is it possible that teams can even negotiate other deals involving heatley or does this wait until the Edmonton deal falls through? Hope this makes sense, its late. haha Any team can negotiate with Ottawa, and the Rangers are. There is nothing to stop them, since the deadline was supposedly midnight on July 2nd all along.

Thanks for confirmation, any news if the oilers will pursue Heatley after 10:00am? I suspect they would, just because the cap number isn't drastically different. Hopefully we hear more this morning.

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#26 Prop Jay
July 01 2009, 06:50AM
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Dear Les Oil,

Why did you eff this up? I am not specifically talking about Heatley, but why would you leak the players dealt from your own organization. This has been a death blow. Penner, smid, or cogs will never play their hearts out for you again. In penner's case nothing will change. Donairs will be eaten. Cogliano and smid are the ones who I worry about.

Why oilers? Why?

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#27 Jon
July 01 2009, 07:22AM
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DaGongshow wrote:

spoonful wrote: One less listener for the TEAM 1260. Amateur hour comes to Edmonton on that station. BooHoo! Enjoy listening to 930 CJCA The Light. Should stroke your self righteous ways. You won’t be missed!

930 CJCA The Light...where Gregor and Just A Game got their start on the airwaves. Don't mock that station too hard, you might annoy Gregor yourself haha.

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#28 oilguyry
July 01 2009, 07:23AM
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Well horcoff out up his best season when we replaced him in the offseason and it fell through so we can only hope penner and cogs do the same

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#29 Dean
July 01 2009, 07:24AM
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spoonful wrote:

One less listener for the TEAM 1260. Amateur hour comes to Edmonton on that station.

So will you not watch the NHL since they don't seem to know if it is the begining or July 1st or the end of July 1st that constitutes the time when bonus payment is due.

I love how overdramatic you are...Do you think guys report things erroneously on purpose? I'm sure you will be listening all day, since it's the best source for local Oiler coverage. But if you are boycotting things how about boycott posting on here, you won't be missed.

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#30 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 07:25AM
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@ Jason Gregor: So, Edmonton was officially on his list of possible destinations. I thought we were talked about as "yes I would possibly waive the NMC to go there" but not on the list of preferred.

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#31 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 07:26AM
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That should have a ? in there

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#32 oilguyry
July 01 2009, 07:30AM
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Put not out damn blackberry

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#33 R-DAWG
July 01 2009, 07:39AM
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This is total crap! If Heatley doesn't want to come here then why did this news leak out? It doesn't make sense. How do these things get out anyway? They should make it a rule that no trades are to be announced until the league has given approval! Now we have 3 guys that know they are trade bait. Does anyone think this will make Penner play better if he doesn't get traded? I hate the media!!

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#34 myteammytown
July 01 2009, 07:43AM
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spoonful wrote:

One less listener for the TEAM 1260. Amateur hour comes to Edmonton on that station.

awwwwww, poor baby.

stick with ched. you can snuggle with you tencer bobble head doll and drift off to sleep to the sweet sounds of a hallsie rerun

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#35 myteammytown
July 01 2009, 07:45AM
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@ R-DAWG:

is anyone surprised anyone would actually take penner?

especially in a deal for a "star"?

i sure as **** am

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#36 Harlie
July 01 2009, 07:46AM
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Futt Heatley. I don't want him now. I thought it was a bit much to give up for him but overall i was happy to get an elite talent from 3 very good players. Now after this shmozzle and the Nylander nightmare redux I want Heatley to take a hike.

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#37 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 07:50AM
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I bet that 3/4 of the people that are ripping on Greggor read hockeybuzz even for a lark. People fail to realize that a deal was indeed done, especially if Edmonton was a team Heatley agreed to go to. It was just then the meth kicked in and Heatley went all bipolar.

But as technically Ottawa said "Ill take it", Edmonton said "Ill take it", so all those people using Amateur hour comments (which rip off of Bob McKenzie from TSN, you're creative) are excessive. To those that say they wont listen to Team1260 again, I guess you wont watch the Oilers then too. We CALLED our players, Oilers management thought it was done deal. We can give our blogger a pass when the GM of our freakin team has the same ideas as him.

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#38 Harlie
July 01 2009, 07:55AM
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t-minus 5 minutes till Free Agent time...

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#39 Harlie
July 01 2009, 07:58AM
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Harlie wrote:

t-minus 5 minutes till Free Agent time…

Oops...I'm 2 hours early on the launch. I just pulled a Heatley! FAILURE TO LAUNCH!

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#40 Beukaboom
July 01 2009, 07:58AM
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Harlie wrote:

t-minus 5 minutes till Free Agent time…

2 hours 5 minutes

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#41 myteammytown
July 01 2009, 07:59AM
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@ Harlie:

isnt it noon ET?

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#42 Harlie
July 01 2009, 08:01AM
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now thatb the Free Agent window is open soon and Heatley's deal can't close until midnight tonight that leaves 12 hours for the Oilers to improve their trade or say futt it and go with a Free Agent. This could work in Edmonton's favor couldn't it? Is their a slim bit of silver lining? Should I have stayed in bed instead of waking up to this train wreck? Stay tuned folks!

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#43 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 08:02AM
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oilertooth wrote:

@ DaGongshow: the most comparable deal that the rangers could put forward would be: roszival (salary dump ala penner) callahan (=cogliano) Korpikoski (=smid) Wouldnt you prefer the oilers deal?

The rumored deal from the Rangers included Brandon Dubinsky, Ryan Callahan & Michael Del Zotto +

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#44 Milli
July 01 2009, 08:02AM
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I saw it on the Score and was stoked. We got Heater!!! So I tune into TSN, and see that it's on "HOLD". What the hell is on HOLD????? This is unbelievable. If he veto's it, then now he is a players who has wanted out twice, and refused a trade. But, I don't know, it sure smells funny. I think that Murray is leveraging this situation. I also heard that Murray leaked the trade to the media, not Heatley. Gregor, have you heard anything like this?

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#45 Dave
July 01 2009, 08:04AM
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I have to agree with the thought that this is nothing more than Heatley trying to leverage the Rangers in to offering something the Sens will accept so he doesnt have to go where he would rather not go.

After Atlanta, then a NMC demand, the extension, a trade request made one year in to that extension, a deal made and then nixed by Heatley after he was the one that wanted out fo the Oilers really want this guy?

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#46 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 08:05AM
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DanMan wrote:

Gregor I have another question. Did the names of the players involved not come out in the proposed comrie deal to Anaheim? I seem to recall Corey Perry’s name being mentioned. If this is true maybe the idea that this is payback from Murray isn’t so far-fetched.

And it isn't that far-fetched to believe Cogliano, Penner & Smid could return and play their hearts out for the Oil. Corey Perry didn't seem to have a problem continuing on with the Ducks.

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#47 B-rad
July 01 2009, 08:09AM
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The city can't take another stunt like that. If Heater says "NO".... it will look like he doesn't like the city......It can't afford to have another slap in the face. I feel bad for the management in this position.....

kepp it up Tambo!

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#48 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 08:13AM
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Harlie wrote:

now thatb the Free Agent window is open soon and Heatley’s deal can’t close until midnight tonight that leaves 12 hours for the Oilers to improve their trade or say futt it and go with a Free Agent. This could work in Edmonton’s favor couldn’t it

No, it could not. We wont have the $

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#49 Theo Rexam (Nepean)
July 01 2009, 08:14AM
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Hi Gregor,

With all due respect, I find this particular article to be mere rhetoric. I heard you come on the air many times last night and say that the deal was 100% done. You mentioned that you spoke to both sides--presumably two sources then), and that it was 100% done. If I recall, you even mention that Heatley had waived his no-trade clause. I saw it on your Twitter. I also heard you come on air adamant that the deal was complete, and you actually swore on air in an almost exasperation that the other media sources would not confirm your information.

That said, I find it odd that the question of the date becomes so significant in terms of justifying why the source was wrong. The issue should be simple, Heatley did not exercise his NTC to come to Edmonton (...yet), and therefore there is no trade at the moment. At one point I heard the deal was 110% done, and if that were true, that must mean that you heard that Heatley had indeed waived his NTC.

I just find that the entire media (not only you Gregor) jumped the gun in regards to an aspect of this story, and are now spewing rhetoric and blaming the NHL and the Senators for misleading everyone.

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#50 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 08:14AM
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nevermind the fact that every FA now has a fresh reminder to not sign in Edmonton, Thank you Pronger, Nylanders wife (that one a legitimate ty), Heatley

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