WTF? The Dany Edition

Robin Brownlee
July 01 2009 11:04PM

If you're asking me, let's hope the done deal for Dany Heatley that came undone last night stays that way. The Edmonton Oilers will be better off without him.

The best thing the Oilers and GM Steve Tambellini can do today with the free agency season officially underway -- unless that deadline has been reported incorrectly without clarification by the NHL as well -- is yank their offer to the Ottawa Senators off the table and move on.

Let's review . . .

-- Heatley and his agents demand a trade out of Ottawa because Dany Boy is unhappy with the way he's been handled by new coach Cory Clouston. Instead of going to GM Bryan Murray on the down-low, Heatley and his agents go public, forcing Murray's hand.

-- In the days since, Heatley, through his agents, make it known that the Oilers would be one of the teams he'd waive his no-trade clause to go to and it's widely reported by MSM outlets, including TSN, that's the case. Oiler fans work themselves into a lather about landing Heatley.

-- Murray fields offers leading up to the NHL Entry Draft. In the wake of the draft, the Oilers step to the front of the line Tuesday with an offer that includes Dustin Penner, Andrew Cogliano and Ladislav Smid. Dump PDP as part of a Heatley deal? Oilers fans are in a frenzy.

-- Late Tuesday afternoon, with a midnight deadline for a $4-million bonus payment to Heatley looming (or so everybody thought), several MSM media outlets, including Sportsnet, TEAM 1260 and The Score, report that the Oilers and Senators have completed the Heatley swap for Penner, Cogliano and Smid. Done deal. Oilers fans rejoice.

-- Other media outlets, notably TSN and Bob McKenzie, say, "Not so fast." Heatley has yet to approve the deal by waiving his no-trade clause. The done deal starts to unravel. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun reports that Heatley has killed the deal. Heatley's agents later clarify Heatley has not killed the deal. He hasn't said no but he hasn't said yes. He wants to "sleep on it." Shunned again, Oiler fans are outraged.

Is that about right?

THE MORNING AFTER

So, as Oilers fans awoke this morning with teeth and fists clenched and cursing Heatley and everybody who reported the done deal, delivering a kick in the collective nuts the way Chris Pronger, Michael Nylander and countless others have done, we're led to believe there's still a chance Heatley might yet give Edmonton his blessing.

Sure, there's still a chance -- if Heatley and his camp can't orchestrate a deal with the New York Rangers before the REAL deadline for the bonus payment ticks by at 11:59 tonight.

Tell me this: how is it that nobody with the Senators or the Oilers had the actual deadline locked down? How is it that the NHL never clarified when the deadline fell? How did everybody get it wrong? Kind of an important detail, don't you think?

That said, and knowing what we think we know today, does the possibility of landing a 40-50 goal player of Heatley's stature trump the red flags that surround him?

While I'm not into the "Dany Heatley's mom wears army boots and dresses him funny" venom that was spewed in Ottawa when he went public with his trade request, for me the answer is no. Not a chance.

The way I see it, the boondoggle that infolded late Tuesday gives the Oilers a chance to reconsider their position, withdraw their offer and run the hell the other way as fast as they can. They should take it.

Ask yourself this: Is Heatley a cornerstone player Tambellini can build his team around for years to come? At $7.5 million per season in a salary cap world, he'd damn sure better be. Are you thinking, "maybe" or are you thinking "no?" Anybody thinking "yes" please raise your hands.

The best thing for the Oilers is that this deal stays undone. Heatley isn't the answer.

RANDOM THOUGHTS

-- It's been suggested that Murray knew the deadline actually fell at 11:59 tonight, but didn't disclose it. The reasoning behind that train of thought is that Murray was using the Oilers to leverage better offers, most notably from the Rangers.

It's also been offered Murray screwed with Tambellini and the Oilers as payback for the Mike Comrie deal that came undone during his days as Anaheim GM -- when Kevin Lowe queered a trade involving Cory Perry with a late stipulation Comrie cough up $2.5 million to complete the swap. In other words, karma is biting the Oilers on the backside.

I'd bet on the former. That, or Murray is grossly incompetent.

-- There's plenty of consternation among Oilers fans that Tambellini now has a problem in the dressing room because Penner, Cogliano and Smid are going to feel unwanted because their names came out in the deal.

Too bad. Get over it. It's part of the gig and part of a business that makes players like Penner, Cogliano and Smid millionaires. The possibility of being traded is part of the package.

Did Penner feel bad because the Ducks didn't match Edmonton's offer sheet? No. He took the money. Still with the Ducks, it seems to me Perry has recovered nicely from being offered up in the Comrie deal that came undone. No?

-- When reporters push to break stories and announce that a deal is done and it goes sideways, they have to wear it. That, like trades for players, is part of the game.

In that regard, it's obvious Jason Gregor of the TEAM 1260, didn't have all of the bases covered in reporting the deal as done.

Fine. Gregor went with his best information and trusted a source and the story went bust. Wrong is wrong. No excuses, but it happens. Own it, as Gregor has, and move on.

That said, there's no excuse for some of the over-the-top crap written by fans and directed at Gregor over what unfolded Tuesday. None.

-- Listen to Robin Brownlee every Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. on Just A Game with Jason Gregor on Team 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#1051 David S
July 01 2009, 11:42PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Same as it was 950 posts ago — the Oilers are better off without Dany Heatley.

More like "Dear Sports Illustrated. Thought you'd be interested to know that I just wrote a blog post that's currently tracking at over 1000 posts. Attached are my credentials..."

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#1052 Archaeologuy
July 01 2009, 11:42PM
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Chris wrote:

Let this be a lesson to anyone who use point totals almost exclusively when evaluating Hockey players.

Lets not pretend that if his Cap hit was only 5 million there wouldnt have been half a dozen more teams lining up offers for Heatley.

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#1053 Kevin Darby
July 01 2009, 11:42PM
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does 88 get his shot now

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#1054 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 11:44PM
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Kevin Darby wrote:

does 88 get his shot now

NO

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#1055 RossCreek
July 01 2009, 11:45PM
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GOODNITE NOOOOOOOWW!!!!!!

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#1056 Archaeologuy
July 01 2009, 11:45PM
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Kevin Darby wrote:

does 88 get his shot now

no because he still has to beat out Penner and Cogs (and Eberle and Brule and in 2 years Omark and MPS and Landen) for a spot on the top two lines. Maybe after a few more trades though.

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#1057 Jonathan Willis
July 01 2009, 11:47PM
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Kevin Darby wrote:

does 88 get his shot now

I can hear that phone conversaiton now:

Tambellini: Well, Pat, we weren't able to get you the 50-goal scorer we wanted, but we have this kid who scored seven in the AHL last season, maybe he could.... *Sound of Gunshot* Tambellini: Pat? Pat?

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#1058 David S
July 01 2009, 11:50PM
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Willis - did you score some Bud Light Lime from Jeanshorts? Because you sir are ON FIRE!

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#1059 Archaeologuy
July 01 2009, 11:51PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: it seems like the both of us have gone to a very dark place on this thread. feel the power of the dark side!

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#1060 idrinkPilsner
July 02 2009, 12:06AM
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Well, I m gonna have a Pilsner lime and head to bead now. (Yes I will just squeeze lime juice into it, and save $ at the same time).

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#1061 Jodes
July 02 2009, 12:18AM
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Pilsner Lime? Is that a redneck version of a Corona?

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#1062 Wanye Gretz
July 02 2009, 12:31AM
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Oh hello -

I've been asleep for 48 hours straight.

Have the Oilers been busy -

Oh.

And then Heatley -

I see.

And then all the other teams -

Uh huh.

And then the comments were how many?

Right.

*mind blows*

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#1063 Jodes
July 02 2009, 12:40AM
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Excellent summary Wanye.. couldn't of said it better myself!

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#1064 tyler
July 02 2009, 12:50AM
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IS anyone else concerned that today the wild, (yesterday) flames, Vancouver, all remained better then us or made the gap bigger. We will be in trouble next year unless the oilers work a few miracles and land heatly or other topr line player. and a third line centre who wins draws and kills............... penalties.

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#1065 Charlie
July 02 2009, 02:49AM
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F8ck it, 1065!!!!

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#1066 B-Rad
July 02 2009, 07:39AM
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@ tyler:

well you know...we are good enough to fight for that eighth and final playoff spot............

We are the NHL's version of ground hog day.

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#1067 I'm a Scientist!
July 02 2009, 10:42AM
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Hi. I don't have anything interesting to contribute. Nothing new there...

*just wrote this in hopes of being the record setter...tip toes out of the room so as to not attract any additional attention to this blog*

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#1068 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:02AM
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@ I'm a Scientist!:

You are on to something...

RECORD IS MINE!

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#1069 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:03AM
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JEANSHORTSANDBAGGEDMILK.COM claims post 1,069!!!!

We've finally made it.

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#1070 I'm a Scientist!
July 02 2009, 11:04AM
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GDSOB!

MINE!

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#1071 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:07AM
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Is it September yet?

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#1072 The Towel Boy
July 02 2009, 11:08AM
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I'm in on this action....

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#1073 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:15AM
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As of this morning, I decided I'm pulling a Switzerland and sitting on the fence until I hear more about this whole mess and what exactly the motives are.

One thing I do know... I will forever bleed copper and blue and will wait patiently until a superstar actually wants to come play up here. *starts planning an Oilers parade in 2047*

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#1074 I'm a Scientist!
July 02 2009, 11:24AM
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Rusty... tsk tsk tsk real comments at this point should REALLY be directed to JW's new blog. Any comments here should be empty, pointless and record setting.

TA DA!

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#1075 Smokin' Ray
July 02 2009, 11:26AM
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So.... are the Oilers doing anything today?

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#1076 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:27AM
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@ I'm a Scientist!:

Megan Fox? Is she an Oiler yet? I think she'd make an excellent assistant coach. You know... stand right next to the opposition bench and work her magic.

Read more: http://www.oilersnation.com/2009/07/wtf-the-dany-edition/#ixzz0K7kkpxK2&C

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#1077 Rusty Shackleford
July 02 2009, 11:27AM
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@ I’m a Scientist!:

Megan Fox? Is she an Oiler yet? I think she’d make an excellent assistant coach. You know… stand right next to the opposition bench and work her magic.

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#1078 I'm a Scientist!
July 02 2009, 11:36AM
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@ Rusty Shackleford:

YES! that is what i am talking about...and actually, that is a rumour worth spreading! i am pretty sure we would have less trouble getting free agents if we had her on our side.

God, this is more work than i had bargained for...

*pretends to leave so that Rusty, Towel Boy and Smokin' ray follow suit*

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#1079 patty
July 02 2009, 11:40AM
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whats all this ruckus? Get off my lawn!

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#1080 Snyders ghost
July 02 2009, 03:22PM
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Don't be dissin my homeboy

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