UPDATED 11:58PM Tinseltown diary: if I have to wait another minute for my coffee, one of these Twilight nerds might go missing

Robin Brownlee
June 24 2010 01:02PM

Robin Brownlee's diary

LOS ANGELES -- I'm going to keep a running diary of what I hear, who I bump into, what's happening and random thoughts through Friday's first round of the draft. Will update three or four times today...

THURSDAY

7:05 a.m. The lobby of the J.W. Marriott, a bee-hive of drinking, schmoozing and all manner of carrying on the night before, is all but deserted, save for former Calgary tough guy Tim Hunter, now a coach with the Toronto Maples Leafs. I always though Timmy looked like Alice The Goon, a cartoon character from my childhood. I've, ahem, never told him so. This morning just isn't the right time.

7:15 a.m. As great as L.A. Live at the Staples Center is, with as many restaurants and bars as you could hope to stagger in and out of in a weekend of Wanye-esque goofery, there is only one Starbuck's in the area. I wander in to see two baristas handling a line-up of 24 people ahead of me. Yes, 24. All but two people in the line-up, an L.A. beat cop and I, are women -- most of them part of this kook Twilight Bunch that is camping out at the L.A. Film Festival.

7:35: I'm blowing snot bubbles and ready to maim the next person who says, "Good morning" by the time I finally get my coffee.

7:50: Maple Leaf GM Brian Burke, like Hunter, is out of the rack early and goes hustling by with a quick "Good morning" to get a coffee. No surprise Brian is on the move.

The way things worked out in the Kessel trade with Toronto's second overall pick going to Boston, Burke, in a crisp black suit, seems a man on a mission. He's going to try to make a splash here in the next couple of days. Don't bet against him.

8:00: Oilers send out a news release confirming the Colin Fraser trade with Chicago and that he cost them the 151st overall pick.

12:30: The NHL will trot out the top prospects and feed the media mob at a luncheon at the Target Terrace today, so I'll be filing something after chatting with Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin an the rest of them before going on the air with Jason Gregor.

-- We're also getting a crack at Oilers GM Steve Tambellini later at 3 p.m., and it'll be a chance to ask him if there's any legs to rumours about him talking to Scott Howson in Columbus about the No. 4 pick.

12:35: The annual prospects lunch at the draft always comes out a bit staged and stiff as the kids are trotted out before reporters yet again. They've just about had enough of hearing the same questions and giving the same answers. And, of course, what could be more thrilling for Taylor Hall or Tyler Seguin than watching a bunch of notepad-packers shove food down their gullets?

12:45: I'm told Howson and the Blue Jackets are definitely willing to move the fourth pick, but only if they can stay in the top eight or nine, because Howson thinks he can get a player he wants there. Among forwards, he likes Ryan Johansen. With D-men, it's Brandon Gormley he's got his eye on. If Howson can get something for moving down two or three spots and still get his man, he'll do it. That scenario would take the Oilers out of the equation and kill any buzz that Tambellini and Howson are talking and that Ales Hemsky's name is being mentioned -- at it least in the context of Columbus moving down.

12:55: Might the Oilers like Jarred Tinordi enough to try to move up a few spots from No. 31 to get him? Vancouver has the 25th pick, and a reporter who covers the Canucks asks me that very question. Problem is, if Tinordi is still there at No. 25, the Canucks would take him.

1:15: -- Talked to Hall and Seguin at the luncheon, but they didn't offer anything more than what we heard when they visited Edmonton. Still, I'll file something after Jason Gregor's show this after afternoon.

2:30: I've been told by two reliable sources that Tambellini is making a serious bid to get the 15th pick, which Florida owns after yesterday's deal with Boston. I'm not sure what Tambellini is offering Florida's Dale Tallon to get it, but this is one to keep an eye on.

I'll ask Tambellini if he's got anything sitting there ("Sure, Robin, here's what I've got...") when we get him at 4 p.m. He won't tell us anything, but, like I said, stay tuned on this one.

TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS?

3:55: Owner Daryl Katz, president of hockey operations Kevin Lowe and Tambellini drew a crowd in the lobby before Tambellini addressed the media -- expect an item on that in the next hour or so -- but Katz slipped out pretty quickly once he saw all the wags hovering around. Good idea.

4:15: Talk about Tambellini's interest in the 15th pick, owned by Florida (from the trade with Boston) spread pretty quickly. Ryan Rishaug of TSN asked Tambellini about what it might take to move, to say 15th, and Tambellini said: "I've had discussions with a lot of teams, like any other manager, trying to acquire another first-round pick.

Dependent on what is there at that time, I guess we'll see what the value is that time. Dale (Tallon) may use the pick, also. "Anything in the first round is very expensive. You're talking either multiple picks or very good young players. It's expensive." I'm thinking Tambellini might start the conversation with Tallon by putting Andrew Cogliano on the table. It'll get his attention.

5:00: As always, reporters will head out for dinner, drinks and whatever else with one eye on their cell phones tonight, especially those of us who cover the Oilers. Aside from Tambellini pushing for the 15th pick, there's going to be all kinds of GMs inquiring about what it might take to get his No. 1 pick.

I'm not saying Tambellini should move it, but it's his job to listen. More than one draft feed or booze-up by reporters has been nixed in mid-meal because a trade comes down, and I wouldn't be surprised if it happens tonight.

5:15: Gregor and I, as you might have heard, talked to centre Colin Fraser on the air today. He's going to add some grit to Tom Renney's bottom six forwards and he's a fit in that mix. He's one reason why I think Tambellini might be able to offer up Cogliano. "I've been talking to a lot of teams, just trying to find one, from a need standpoint, that bottom-six forward who can kill penalties and takes a lot of pride in that," Tambellini said.

"The fact that he's a western Canadian player who understands the environment there, it's important. We're going to have a young team, but we want character, good people surrounding them. Colin, his character, is very strong. "We've talked so many times about adding people who just love to compete every night. He comes to play, and that's what we're looking for."

BATCAVE TIDBITS FROM TYLER

Seguin and Hall gave pretty standard answers at the prospects luncheon today, although Seguin did come up with some gems when he talked about having dinner at Katz's house during his stop in Edmonton. "I guess the word to put on it is surreal," Seguin said of his visit to Katz's swank joint.

"Going there, an $8-million house, two Bentleys, a Range Rover, pools in and out, a hockey rink. It was a dream house. "He had three security guards who never left the house. They all drove Cadillacs, so it was crazy, yeh."

Caddies? Sounds like an updated prairie version of Graceland and the Memphis Mafia. Seguin on his visit to Edmonton: "It was great," he said. "Edmonton is a great city. It's beautiful there. I saw a glimpse of the fan base because I had people coming up to me in the street and stuff like that."

More later . . .

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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#1 Archaeologuy
June 24 2010, 01:08PM
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That title made my day

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#2 Curious
June 24 2010, 01:11PM
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Whats the liability on myself if Brownlee assaults some poor young kid for being the wrong person to say good morning to him before a wake-up StarBucks? I did give money to send him. Should I be consulting consel now?

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#3 bingofuel
June 24 2010, 01:14PM
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@Curious

Robin Brownlee has full diplomatic immunity. It's a fact*

*no it isn't.

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#4 Curious
June 24 2010, 01:16PM
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Oh good - no problems then. I was just kind of concerned since the time between the 8 am Starbucks and 12 noon luncheon was unaccounted for

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#5 I'm a Scientist!
June 24 2010, 01:19PM
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This diary is going to make my production at work reach an all time low. Thank you.

I saw "Taylor" in your article and thought you were talking about Taylor Lautner....SQUEEEE! OMG OMG OMG...if you see TL can you PLUUUUEEZZ try and get a strand of his hair?!? SUPERSQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

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#6 Wanye
June 24 2010, 01:28PM
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Taylor Lautner > Taylor Hall.

The Oil should do us all a favour and pick him first.

Might I also add:

SQUEEEEEEEEEE

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#7 I'm a Scientist!
June 24 2010, 01:29PM
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@Wanye

Big Sexy jr! Yahoo! Good idea! Can he skate? Wait...who cares?

SQUEEEEEE!

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#8 Quicksilver ballet
June 24 2010, 01:29PM
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Thats not a very masculin looking diary there Robin. I had expected something with a little more brown leather, maybe it's just a little when in Rome do as the Romans do thing.

The pier pressure of LA has taken the crust off of Robin Brownlee.

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#9 The Towel Boy
June 24 2010, 01:33PM
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Speaking of masculine: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKK37G-ZWvk&feature=player_embedded

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#10 Dave Z
June 24 2010, 01:36PM
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Tamby talking with Howson about the Columbus 4th overall pick! Now that would be nice. I keep saying I feel Columbus needs to make a splash to push for a high playoff spot. They have done enough building, time to big a winner to CBJ. Maybe Tamby is talking about Penner, Hemsky, Cogliano, Smid, Petry, etc as possible bargaining chips to land the 4th overall pick so the Oilers can take either Gormley, Gudbranson or Fowler. Would be nice.

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#11 rubbertrout
June 24 2010, 01:40PM
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THere has been an awful lot of "SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE" on this site of late.

Very Ballsy.

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I like these diaries. Will be a bookmark for the next few days.

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#13 Reagan
June 24 2010, 01:45PM
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Hemsky and Souray for 4th overall pick and Derek Brassard?

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#14 Gerald R. Ford
June 24 2010, 01:49PM
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Best title ever.

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#15 bingofuel
June 24 2010, 01:50PM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

We'll be publishing each day of Robin's diaries in a different post (ie, one for Thurs, one for Fri, etc), so be sure and check back at the main page on those days!

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@bingofuel

How about Gregor? Or because he has a desginated driver he isn't going to be doing too much reporting?

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#17 Hemmertime
June 24 2010, 01:59PM
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First

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#18 Zamboni Driver
June 24 2010, 02:00PM
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You guys are really off your rockers.

RPatz is WAY better than Taylor L. They would have to throw in another zombie for me to care about that deal.

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#19 Senator Theo
June 24 2010, 02:05PM
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Hemmertime wrote:

First

First what?

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#20 Dan the Man
June 24 2010, 02:07PM
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Robin,

Did the coffee kick in before Burke said good morning to you?

I'm really hoping it didn't and that he is now a maimed man.

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#21 SirFozz
June 24 2010, 02:11PM
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Ballsy move saying good morning to Brownlee before he's had his coffee. He might beat you to death with his pink diary.

Squeeeee!!!

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#22 Senator Theo
June 24 2010, 02:12PM
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I've checked in a couple other articles on here, but no responses yet:

I know the TSN coverage starts at 5, but doesn' anyone (RB, JG, other) know when the actual picking starts?

I'm trying to find out what time I have to leave work for my "appointment". *wink

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#23 SirFozz
June 24 2010, 02:16PM
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Senator Theo wrote:

I've checked in a couple other articles on here, but no responses yet:

I know the TSN coverage starts at 5, but doesn' anyone (RB, JG, other) know when the actual picking starts?

I'm trying to find out what time I have to leave work for my "appointment". *wink

Isn't that "appointment" for 1 in the afternoon....

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#24 Dan the Man
June 24 2010, 02:16PM
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Senator Theo wrote:

I've checked in a couple other articles on here, but no responses yet:

I know the TSN coverage starts at 5, but doesn' anyone (RB, JG, other) know when the actual picking starts?

I'm trying to find out what time I have to leave work for my "appointment". *wink

I believe the picking starts at 6.

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Just wondering if the Oilers plan on offering their RFA's qualifying contracts anytime soon? Only have til the 26th or 27th.

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#26 Heather
June 24 2010, 02:23PM
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If you take a 5-10 minute walk up Figueroa Street to 7th there are two additional Starbucks with no Twi-tards and much quicker service. I get my coffee there every morning :)

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#27 BUCK75
June 24 2010, 02:31PM
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LOL - Tim Hunter looks like Alice the Goon.

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#28 Propellor
June 24 2010, 02:34PM
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@Reagan

I like this, but I think we'd be needing to throw in the 31st pick and/or take some dollars back.

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#29 Senator Theo
June 24 2010, 02:36PM
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Dan the Man wrote:

I believe the picking starts at 6.

If you are right about this, I'm going to be very happy. and excited.

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Dreger saying Florida willing to give the 15th up and that we are one team looking at acquiring it.

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#31 Senator Theo
June 24 2010, 02:38PM
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SirFozz wrote:

Isn't that "appointment" for 1 in the afternoon....

I tried this, but my boss asked my why I was using air quotes when I said "appointment".

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#32 David S
June 24 2010, 03:09PM
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I'm looking forward to a few words about Robin's visit to the Barrett Jackson auction.

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#33 Ball Buster
June 24 2010, 03:26PM
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@Senator Theo

Way too many articles on the upcoming draft so I can't remember where I read it but I recall either 5:30 or 5:40 p.m. as when the picking will actually start.

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Sounds like 15th + player for Penner is what is being talked about.

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#35 HOFFFF
June 24 2010, 03:52PM
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Sadly.....I remember Alice the Goon.

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#36 Heavyd
June 24 2010, 03:53PM
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@Senator Theo

The picking starts at around 5:05.

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#37 Heavyd
June 24 2010, 03:55PM
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@Ball Buster

No too late. Meancer I have been listening to Gregor on his show and he has been saying 5:05 to 5:10.

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#38 Lisa McRitchie
June 24 2010, 03:58PM
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25 hours people

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#39 michael
June 24 2010, 04:51PM
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Would that 15th pick be used for a player like Mark Pysyk or Macilwraith? I like MC I'm the meanest sob in the draft wraith. He would fill several holes I would think?You?

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#40 RossCreekNation
June 24 2010, 05:07PM
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@michael

I'd think McIlrath is the guy they'd be targeting at 15.

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#41 Skidplate
June 24 2010, 05:16PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

I'd think McIlrath is the guy they'd be targeting at 15.

Or Tinordi

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#42 Heavyd
June 24 2010, 05:58PM
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@Skidplate

To early to pick Tinordi IMO.

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#43 RossCreekNation
June 24 2010, 06:00PM
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@Heavyd

Agreed. If they want Tinordi, they'll look at 20-25. If they can get 15, McIlrath would be the target, imo.

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#44 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
June 24 2010, 06:36PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

Just wondering if the Oilers plan on offering their RFA's qualifying contracts anytime soon? Only have til the 26th or 27th.

at the rate tambo seems to make decisions at?

remember what happened when chicago was late last year? ruh roh!!!!!

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#45 RedTide
June 25 2010, 01:07PM
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No updates today Robin?

Comments are closed for this article.