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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#151 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:01AM
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^^ @ Chester Copperpot: Thats what got this whole Ek convo going in the 1st place ;-)

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#152 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:02AM
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RossCreek wrote:

Chester Copperpot wrote: All this Eklund talk hand me go over to Hockey Buzz and I found: Eklund Heatley accepting Deal to Edm (E3) (new) “Need we say “cautious optimism”” #126 RossCreek July 1 2009, 9:45 am. Reagan wrote: We all are. Eklund is a joke. -Pressure on Heatley Mounts as Oilers/Hossa Prepare (E3) “Talking to sources right now, I really think that we may see a decision from Heatley by noon, once and for all. At least that would be the professional and right thing to do.” - Eklund ADHD, you say?

didnt know pinging a server counted as talking....maybe im not anti-social huzzah!

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#153 Heazues
July 01 2009, 10:03AM
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Librarian Mike wrote:

Anybody else wonder if, at the last minute, Bryan Murray demanded an additional $4 million from the Oilers as part of the Heatley deal?

cant do that anymore.

but i do wonder that if the sens had to pay the signing bonus, would it be possible for katz to directly pay it back. not as part of the trade itself, but a person to person payback. and would katz do this?

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#154 Sweet Jimmy K
July 01 2009, 10:03AM
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Hmmm...just watching TSN and they are talking about the Sedins, thier agent is JP Barry...same as Heatley. They said that the Sedins controlled that situation. Barry is certainly earning his money these past couple of days.

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#155 Travis Dakin
July 01 2009, 10:06AM
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Chester Copperpot wrote:

Last year this team was going to contend for the divion title and the reason they didn’t according to Oiler many fans was because of MacT. With new coaches, and a year’s expereince under the young guys, it’s not like this team needs to strangle inself in salary cap to be somewhat comptitive. a) Sign Goalie b) Acquire 3rd liner who can win a faceoff.

And replace the three guys you've completely alienated in these trade talks. This is probably one of the most f*cked up situations in NHL history.

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#156 MattL
July 01 2009, 10:07AM
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Heazues wrote:

but i do wonder that if the sens had to pay the signing bonus, would it be possible for katz to directly pay it back. not as part of the trade itself, but a person to person payback. and would katz do this?

Pretty sure that counts as "illegal."

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#157 Chris
July 01 2009, 10:08AM
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I need INFORMATION!

Who stopped/delayed the deal? Heatley or Murray? Did Tambo have a copy of Heatley's Ottawa standard NHL contract... or was he working with info that had been merely passed along? If Murray deliberatly withheld info (extra 24 hrs) just to screw the Oilers over, I want him sued!

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#158 Chester Copperpot
July 01 2009, 10:09AM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Completely alienated? C'mon these are big boys, they know it's part of the job.

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#159 Rice
July 01 2009, 10:09AM
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Is it too late to switch gears and go after Hossa? Then those three names that the Oil were willing to part with could be used to find other pieces of the puzzle.

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#160 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:11AM
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Anyone know if/how to get tsn2 feed on internet?

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#161 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:13AM
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Travis Dakin wrote:

And replace the three guys you’ve completely alienated in these trade talks. This is probably one of the most f*cked up situations in NHL history.

#306 RossCreek July 1 2009, 12:32 am.

Bob Stauffer just stated that he talked to a player (although not named, it was Penner) who understands that this is a business and is willing to come back and play hard.

Ten bux Heatley’s an Oiler tomorrow.

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#162 Librarian Mike
July 01 2009, 10:15AM
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I don't know where he's going to end up, but that's going to be the hot ticket next season for sure when he comes to town. I think the city should deny him access to hotels here and force him to stay in Nisku or something. No, I'm not being vindictive at all. haha.

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#163 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:16AM
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Eklund wrote:

OHLUND TO TAMPA e5

Eklund's 1st test of the day. Will he lose his followeres within the 1st half hour?

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#164 Reagan
July 01 2009, 10:18AM
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I'm going to watch TSN. Enough blogging for now... Enjoy the day guys...

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#165 Heazues
July 01 2009, 10:18AM
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MattL wrote:

Heazues wrote: but i do wonder that if the sens had to pay the signing bonus, would it be possible for katz to directly pay it back. not as part of the trade itself, but a person to person payback. and would katz do this? Pretty sure that counts as “illegal.”

probably is. but does the signing bonus count against the cap? if it doesnt would it still be illegal?

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#166 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:21AM
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@ Heazues: its in the CBA so it can noit be done. As for legal issues hard to prove that 4m$ cash was a birthday present.

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#167 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:23AM
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Team 1260 now confirming Ohlund to Tampa. 7 years, 22 mil Ohlund to mentor young Victor Hedman Assume he retires with year or two left on contract to lower cap hit.

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#168 Heazues
July 01 2009, 10:23AM
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@ Hemmertime: kinda what i meant. but i didnt know that it was specificly dealt with in the CBA. hence i wasnt sure if it was illegal.

but a b-day present or a very expensive hockey card sale... is hard to prove that it has anything to do with the deal. :P

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#169 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:26AM
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Heazues wrote:

@ Hemmertime: kinda what i meant. but i didnt know that it was specificly dealt with in the CBA. hence i wasnt sure if it was illegal. but a b-day present or a very expensive hockey card sale… is hard to prove that it has anything to do with the deal.

im sure katz owns a shell company how bout a few bucks in a numbered account? har har

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#170 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:27AM
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Wish I had tsn2......

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#171 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:29AM
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wish was at least women's tennis on tsn.

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#172 Librarian Mike
July 01 2009, 10:29AM
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You know, even if the deal goes through...will fans even give him a chance? Will he phone it in until we flip him to wherever he wants to go? Following this is like picking at a sore tooth. It hurts so much, but I just can't not do it.

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#173 Sweet Jimmy K
July 01 2009, 10:31AM
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Ugh...this is too slow today. The NHL needs something like EPL, a transfer window. That way all trades and signings are done within a certain period. That would make things way more interesting.

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#174 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:31AM
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@ Librarian Mike: hopefully when the dust settles we will have a clearer idea of who did what when, at this point im not sure Heatley had much to do with the delay, I think OTT was ecstatic when they found out they had more time to squeze out one more asset...

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#175 Hemmertime
July 01 2009, 10:31AM
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@ Sweet Jimmy K: agreed.

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#176 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:32AM
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Hemmertime wrote:

Wish I had tsn2……

Me too :-(

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#177 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:33AM
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Mark Spector wrote:

An Eastern Conference scout whose team was in the running for Heatley weighs in on the Dany Heatley situation with this point: “Clearly, Ottawa was willing to take less to ship Heatley to the West. They wanted young, potential stars from Eastern teams. [Andrew] Cogliano is a good player, but they’re taking salary back with [Dustin] Penner.” That means the bar has been lowered now that everyone knows what the Oilers offer was. Maybe the Rangers CAN unload overpaid defenceman Michal Rozsival after all in this deal. “Steve Tambellini must be livid that the names came out in this deal,” said the scout. You can look Andrew Cogliano in the eye if you’re the Oilers GM and say, “Son, you have to give up a god player to get a 50-goal scorer, and you’re that good player. We meant no disrespect.” But Penner? What are you going to say to him? “Well, Dustin, we tried to dump your enormous contract. But looks like we’ll have to keep on pitching.”
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#178 Sweet Jimmy K
July 01 2009, 10:35AM
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Ugh...why do these TSN talking heads think that Tortorella is going to be any harder on Heatley than Quinn would be. He had an issue with Clouston and his request for accountability, Quinn and Torts will shred this guy. Maybe that is what is holding it up, he wants to go to a team with a coach that will toss him softballs.

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#179 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:36AM
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RossCreek wrote:

Team 1260 now confirming Ohlund to Tampa. 7 years, 22 mil Ohlund to mentor young Victor Hedman Assume he retires with year or two left on contract to lower cap hit.

Correction... as per TSN... $24.5M, 7 years, $3.5M cap hit

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#180 Prop Jay
July 01 2009, 10:38AM
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Any news on th heatly front? I had to leave for 20 mins

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#181 Heazues
July 01 2009, 10:38AM
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@ Prop Jay: nothing

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#182 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 10:38AM
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RossCreek wrote:

RossCreek wrote: Team 1260 now confirming Ohlund to Tampa. 7 years, 22 mil Ohlund to mentor young Victor Hedman Assume he retires with year or two left on contract to lower cap hit. Correction… as per TSN… $24.5M, 7 years, $3.5M cap hit

As per Darren Dreger's Twitter... Ohlund will get 22.5 of the 24.5 in the next 5 years.

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#183 Sweet Jimmy K
July 01 2009, 10:53AM
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Silly Eklund thinks Biron is coming to town.

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#184 Jason Gregor
July 01 2009, 11:12AM
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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.

I would like to think that trying to screw a guy over later, while at the same time damaging yourself (Murray) wouldn't make much sense. There was massive speculation about the names, but most came out after the deal didn't go down. At that point a GM can tell a player it was hogwash, and the player could believe him. I think this case is different. Many reports are that Murray thought it was done. We'll see.Theo Rexam (Nepean) wrote:

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.

I'm not sure what rhetoric you are talking about and it certainly wasn't spewed. The biggest concern in this is that the deadline has changed. The deadline was the biggest reason both teams felt the urgency to get it done, and then at last minute it's announced the deadline is different. How does that not seem strange to you. I have no problem admitting I was wrong if it turns out the deal doesn't go down, but I've also heard he agreed verbally, but then didn't sign the sheet. Which is actually understandable.

You can believe what you want but how this has played out doesn't help out either team or Heatley at this moment.

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#185 Jason Gregor
July 01 2009, 11:19AM
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Uncle Geoff wrote:

@ Gregor: How do you feel about Bob McKenzie saying it was “amateur hour” reporting that said it was a done deal, and Dreger’s twitter account telling followers to “stick with who you can trust”…? Not suggesting the comment is leveled specifically at oilersnation.com or you, just wondering what you thought of the comments.

I never read either, but that is normal posturing in the media. They have a good track record, but it isn't perfect either. I'll guarantee that in his time Bob has mis reported something, but like most reporters you have a short memory. And Dreger saying stick to who you can trust, is a good way to keep people coming back. I wouldn't think it was a slag at us, but moreso their direct competition. Just adds some spice to the story in my mind.

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#186 Oilers icon
July 01 2009, 11:19AM
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Come on sign blaire betts we need a pk specialist

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#187 dumb
July 01 2009, 11:30AM
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The whole trade is tainted now even if it does go through.

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#188 heavyd
July 01 2009, 12:05PM
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i hope we arent waiting for heatly to say yes or no and leeting everyone walk

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#189 Tyler
July 01 2009, 12:29PM
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Why would the league let their partners report this without quietly correcting them?

Because if they got into the business of correcting the media about things, they wouldn't have time to get any work done?

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#190 Oilers icon
July 01 2009, 12:30PM
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Great roli's gone now need a goalie :-(

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#191 Mike L
July 01 2009, 12:53PM
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Tyler wrote:

Why would the league let their partners report this without quietly correcting them? Because if they got into the business of correcting the media about things, they wouldn’t have time to get any work done?

Yeah because that is what he meant. Your negative crap doesn't need to be here. Go back to your lame site that no one reads. We don't need your always negative attitude here.

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