SHELDON SOURAY: NOT DONE YET

Robin Brownlee
November 21 2011 02:12PM

Healthy and happy again, Sheldon Souray resisted the urge to dish any dirt when reporters gathered around this morning looking for some juicy quotes about his unhappy time with the Edmonton Oilers. Souray took the high road, and it looked good on him.

Written off as a spent force and a malcontent has-been by a lot of people, including me, after speaking his mind got him banished to the AHL on loan by the Oilers last season, Souray has SIUTBOHC through the 19 games he's played with the Dallas Stars.

In that sense, he's been every bit of an unlikely feel-good a story for the Stars as Nikolai Khabibulin, who was supposed to be finished, done and over with as an NHL goaltender, has been for the Oilers.

With 4-9-13 for the Stars, Souray has been an anchor on the Dallas defence. He's been scoring at a rate we haven't seen since 2008-09, when he had 53 points with the Oilers before injuries sent his career sideways and his public disdain for the way he was handled by GM Steve Tambellini landed him on the outs in Edmonton.

At 35, Souray is playing the brand of hockey for the Stars that fans in Edmonton didn't get enough of as injuries limited him to seasons of 26, 81 and 37 games on a big ticket with the Oilers.

He's obviously not done yet.

SPEAKS HIS MIND

As Jason Gregor suggested in his GDB, Souray's source of discontent in Edmonton was with Tambellini and team management in concert with the frustrations brought on by injuries and the Oilers inability to compete. He had a lousy time on a lousy team.

That said, I never once heard Souray trash the city or fans of the team. I never heard anybody once say Souray was a bad teammate. An unhappy one? Yes. There's a difference.

Despite good intentions on both sides, Souray never got settled in here and it went wrong from the get-go. Feeling he was rushed back from a shoulder injury after signing with the Oilers and missing 56 games in 2007-08, things started to slide between Souray and Tambellini pretty quickly, despite those 53 points in his only healthy season.

When Souray sounded off at the end of the 2009-10 season, he was finished as an Oiler, big ticket or not. Rather than have him around last season, Tambellini loaned him to Hershey of the AHL while owner Daryl Katz kept signing his cheques.

I applauded Tambellini more than once for sticking by his guns -- keeping Souray away from a dressing room full of young players and eliminating any chance his unhappiness would poison the well after his public bowel movement on the organization. On principle, I still do.

MOVING ON

Souray was made available to any team that wanted him through trade and waivers at a cut rate, but nobody bit. He never did stay healthy long enough to attract much interest. The New York Rangers took at look-see in Hershey but eventually passed. He finished last season with 4-15-19 in 40 games with the Bears. He looked done. I thought he was.

Obviously not. Dallas GM Joe Nieuwendyk thought different and took a chance on him, signing Souray to a one-year deal at $1.65. So far, he's looked like money in the bank -- big and nasty as always and unloading that wicked shot from the point. The kind of defenseman the Oilers could use right about now, no? Classic SIUTBOHC.

So, when reporters leaned in today looking for some notepad-filling commentary, Souray could have been excused for unloading another movement on Tambellini and on those who deemed him done.

"We're just focusing here for tonight. It's a big game for us here," said Souray. "We're needing the points. We're in a little bit of a tailspin here, so it's just a bit of focusing and getting ready for tonight's game.

"Edmonton wasn't the first team I played for and it's been a couple years since I played there, so it's really just another game for us. It's been awhile since I was an Oiler, so I'm really just trying to focus on tonight and what we have to do here."

Healthy. Happy. He's moved on.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show 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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#2 Soft Hands McSteeley - FIST Movement
November 21 2011, 02:21PM
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hi

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#3 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
November 21 2011, 02:37PM
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wtf wrote:

wtf is a SIUTBOHC and why are we expected to know what that means?

it is an inside joke, and so far only your mom has been allowed on the inside... or was it us allowed inside your...nevermind

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#6 Quicksilver ballet
November 21 2011, 02:55PM
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C'mon guys. It's right under the language clause in your Oilersnation manual, you know, the one that states you must speak 3 languages fluently, English, Sarcasm and Masked Profanity. Get with the program dudes.

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#7 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
November 21 2011, 02:58PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Seriously, I'm not going to start from square one for those who haven't been following along.

We ghost ride whips here. We have the GDB, the OGDP and the NSOGDP. We have SIUTBOHC. We have RX1 and on and on. Perhaps we should produce an Oilersnation For Dummies handbook.

get madjam to write it. any new visitor who can figure it out is welcomed with open arms

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#8 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
November 21 2011, 02:45PM
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oilredemption wrote:

well i am also curious about this inside joke you speak of. I always see it in articles but can never break it down. Please help i wish to be cool and be part of the group so, can i find out what SIUTBOHC means?

Shove It Up The Backside Of His Critics

SIUTBOHC

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#9 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 03:25PM
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Soft Hands McSteeley - FIST Movement wrote:

hi

I'm sure I can speak for Blak here when I reply in kind: hi

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#11 Brodie
November 21 2011, 05:08PM
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Like the picture of Souray in front of the "Touche" sign. Touche indeed to his critics.

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#13 Hemmertime
November 21 2011, 05:40PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Seriously, I'm not going to start from square one for those who haven't been following along.

We ghost ride whips here. We have the GDB, the OGDP and the NSOGDP. We have SIUTBOHC. We have RX1 and on and on. Perhaps we should produce an Oilersnation For Dummies handbook.

I'd buy it. I've been around these parts for a few years, never miss an article (if I do, I check the previous days, but thanks to smartphones and bathroom breaks have all the time I need!) but even I had no idea what SIUTBOHC was... google didn't answer, thank god the comments did or I wouldn't get any sleep tonight.

But seriously, I'd buy it, write it.

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#14 D
November 21 2011, 02:21PM
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Would having Souray on the Oilers this year been a good thing for the team?

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#15 smiliegirl15
November 21 2011, 02:23PM
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I'm glad to see Sheldon back and doing well. I honestly don't think Tambellini is an asset to the Oilers. He's done okay but I'm still not convinced.

@D - I think as long as Management is the same as when Souray was here before, there would be sour grapes somewhere. He would certainly help our blue line and, while I don't think he would take his malcontent out on the ice to the detriment of his team, his feelings about management would not be good for the team. The current outcome is the best for all parties although we still have a thin blue line.

\/\/\/\/ wtf - it's been referenced here many times in several articles.

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#16 wtf
November 21 2011, 02:25PM
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wtf is a SIUTBOHC and why are we expected to know what that means?

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#18 Quicksilver ballet
November 21 2011, 02:28PM
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If only Tambellini had acted like a professional/or in the best interests of the Edmonton Oilers hockey club 18 months ago. It must've been an embarassment for all involved, and should remain a black mark on Tambellinis resume for the rest of his days as a GM in this league.

Management not accepting some responsibilty on this issue probably has alot to do with back to back last place finishes. It certainly revealed some limitations/lack of capabilities as far as Steve's concerned.

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#19 oilredemption
November 21 2011, 02:44PM
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well i am also curious about this inside joke you speak of. I always see it in articles but can never break it down. Please help i wish to be cool and be part of the group so, can i find out what SIUTBOHC means?

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#20 yawto
November 21 2011, 02:48PM
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Seriously though Brownlee, What is Siutbohc. Been wondering for awhile and have never asked. After seeing it enough times I am genuinely curious.

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#21 Ninjai
November 21 2011, 02:51PM
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wtf wrote:

wtf is a SIUTBOHC and why are we expected to know what that means?

SIUTBOHC means Shoved It Up The Backside Of His Critics

Edit: beat out by cableguy. I should've refreshed first

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#22 DieHard
November 21 2011, 02:55PM
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I think the Oil will be in really good spirits tonight and pull off a 5 to 1 victory. Souray won't be a factor. He'll get pressed and won't get any shots off and won't land any hits of significance.

Glad to see he's still playing though.

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#23 David S
November 21 2011, 02:58PM
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oilredemption wrote:

well i am also curious about this inside joke you speak of. I always see it in articles but can never break it down. Please help i wish to be cool and be part of the group so, can i find out what SIUTBOHC means?

Shoved It Up The Backside Of His Critics.

In Souray's case, well done.

I guess the unwritten rule of pro sports is that you get paid ridiculous amounts, in part, to be a good corporate soldier. When the odd guy like Souray breaks that rule, all hell breaks loose. Team owners and managers don't like to be second-guessed or criticized by the people they effectively "own". It's not that hugely different in everyday business.

How far would any of us get publicly burning the people we work for. Not very.

Souray didn't want to give this interview and I'm a bit dismayed that the media forced his hand. Sure there might be a story, but I wonder if this was going a bit too far. Good on Souray for keeping to the high road when forced to do something he clearly wanted to avoid.

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#24 Shredder
November 21 2011, 03:00PM
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Take it easy Brownlee...I can't remember what SIUTBOHC means either...he certainly seemed angry in his post, but let's take the high road here...no need to generate bad karma for the us as a fan base!

As far as Souray taking the high road this morning...good for him. I can not stand the guy still, and how he ripped management and wanted a trade halfway through a 5 year deal was completely unaccpetable and unprofessional. As much as I hope his bad karma comes back at him tonight, I'm glad he's moved on, as we have obviously moved on as well. Let's remember that we signed him in a panic because everyone took off from Edmonton that year and we needed to get SOMEBODY. Worst case would be that he's still on the team in this, his last year of his old contract.

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#25 ItsTheBGB
November 21 2011, 03:03PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Seriously, I'm not going to start from square one for those who haven't been following along.

We ghost ride whips here. We have the GDB, the OGDP and the NSOGDP. We have SIUTBOHC. We have RX1 and on and on. Perhaps we should produce an Oilersnation For Dummies handbook.

LETS DO IT!!!!!

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#27 geoilersgist
November 21 2011, 03:06PM
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@Robin Brownlee

That reply just made my afternoon at work that much better.

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#28 Wäx Män Riley
November 21 2011, 03:18PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Seriously, I'm not going to start from square one for those who haven't been following along.

We ghost ride whips here. We have the GDB, the OGDP and the NSOGDP. We have SIUTBOHC. We have RX1 and on and on. Perhaps we should produce an Oilersnation For Dummies handbook.

I like this idea.

Big Sexy, The Human Rake, The Human Crane, Fists, and Epic Sax Guy. It may take a manual for newbies here.

Or maybe forget the manual. Throw the rookies into the deep end and see if they can swim.

I think wtf at the top there just got sent down to the minors.

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#29 Chuckpuck5000
November 21 2011, 03:20PM
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lets go oilers !!! and WTF ? thats your name? okay ....... any way Oil got this tonight. 4-2 hallsy back to back hatty ! smids first goal in 2 yrs.! whoooooooooooooooooooooooooo ohh and sids back good night for hockey !!

_ oh and i will make the Oil nation for dummies book in my spare time between ghost riding my whip, and herion beer hangovers.

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#30 Vaclav
November 21 2011, 03:24PM
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I'm not exonerating Tambellini of some blame in the Souray debacle but how long is it going to take NHL players (and their agents) to realize that the best way to request a trade from an organization is to do it privately.

You talk about Souray taking the high road, Robin, but this is the first high road the guy has chosen to take in 2 years. He demanded a trade, crapped on the organization, crapped again and again and made it impossible for Tambellini to move him for negative cents on the dollar. Even in Hershey when Souray had hit rock bottom he was still taking pot shots at the Oilers.

No praise due for Souray opting to keep his mouth shut one time. Props to him, though, for proving that he can still play at a high level in the NHL.

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#31 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 03:28PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

C'mon guys. It's right under the language clause in your Oilersnation manual, you know, the one that states you must speak 3 languages fluently, English, Sarcasm and Masked Profanity. Get with the program dudes.

Don't forget the extended list items... there were some key components of citizenship on there

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#32 smiliegirl15
November 21 2011, 03:31PM
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An ON for Dummies would set up your retirement nicely Robin. It would be nice if everyone read the comments instead of just posting in them.

@Romulus' Apotheosis

Soft Hands McSteeley - FIST Movement wrote: hi
I'm sure I can speak for Blak here when I reply in kind: hi

I think he was trying to be crafty to get his "fist" first into Robin's comments section.

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#33 Pucker
November 21 2011, 03:35PM
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I liked what Souray brought to the Oilers. I'm sure most, if not all fans did - when he was playing.

What comes to mind for me is that he signed the big money contract without fully committing himself to the Oiler's. He always had the out to ask for a trade.

I may be wrong because we don't know what goes on behind the scenes but this is generally the big problem with signing big $$ free agents.

I'm glad the Oil is getting away from that and I do wish The Big Sexy all the luck (except for tonight).

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#34 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 03:36PM
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@Wäx Män Riley

And here I thought I was savvy to all the ON goodies...

what are these things:

Big Sexy, The Human Rake, The Human Crane

I haven't seen them around here and I'm around quite a bit.

PS. This site is like a split personality: one side all ghost-riding and Wanyefied; the other all statsy McWillised... It would be great to have a handbook for each. One filled with explanations of acronyms, lists, squees and other silly bits; the other with clear definitions of corsi, contract clauses and other serious bits of hockeydom

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#35 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 03:38PM
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@smiliegirl15

i don't doubt he missed his opportunity and left that hi there instead... doesn't matter to me though... i still find it irrationally and exceedingly funny.

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#36 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 03:44PM
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So... someone has to broach the question...

Since Barker was our big busted, no good, but maybe has potential to turn things around FA D signing it's only fair to hold his efforts and his compensation against Souray...

Barker's getting a cool 2.25, he hasn't produced and has been injury plagued since getting here; Nieuwendyk got Souray for cheaper, he's produced and stayed healthy (so far); and unless I'm reading the numbers site wrong we are still on the hook for part of Souray's salary...

Looks like Nieuwendyk got a much better deal so far... much better.

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#37 Ales Hallsky
November 21 2011, 03:50PM
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@Romulus' Apotheosis

I dont know if you are being sarcastic but... these three are nicknames for the three following (you can figure out who is who): Chara, Pronger, Souray(or Kevin Nash...BIG DADDY COOL DIESEL!!! WOLFPAC FOR LIFE TOO SWEEEET!!!!) but i digress.....

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#38 TigerUnderGlass
November 21 2011, 03:53PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Seriously, I'm not going to start from square one for those who haven't been following along.

We ghost ride whips here. We have the GDB, the OGDP and the NSOGDP. We have SIUTBOHC. We have RX1 and on and on. Perhaps we should produce an Oilersnation For Dummies handbook.

You're forgetting the timeless FMNF.

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#39 David S
November 21 2011, 03:55PM
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Seems to me an Oilers Nation Wikipedia page might be in order. Then you could have a "ON for Dummies" link from the site here.

~It's not like Wanye doesn't have much to do at Nation Headquarters anyways.~

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#40 A-Mc
November 21 2011, 03:58PM
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Sometimes I wonder why the Oiler's are so Injury Prone.

Is it the Guys we sign?

Is it the style of hockey they are told to play?

or is there something behind the scenes that Souray was acting against?

I'm hoping it's just Bad Luck. I would be fairly disappointed to hear that the Oiler's Players aren't afforded proper healing time because an upper management guy can't afford to look bad.

Unfortunately this is an area I'd never be Certain about unless i was on the Inside.

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#41 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 04:00PM
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Ales Hallsky wrote:

I dont know if you are being sarcastic but... these three are nicknames for the three following (you can figure out who is who): Chara, Pronger, Souray(or Kevin Nash...BIG DADDY COOL DIESEL!!! WOLFPAC FOR LIFE TOO SWEEEET!!!!) but i digress.....

Genuine question. thanks for the answer.

umm unless i'm asking for scorn, in which case scorn away... a brief follow-up... is there some rationale for the names? granted i'm not thinking about it very hard, i'm sure it's there somewhere... but i'm lazy... just tell me.

thanks in advance... again genuine inquiry.

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#43 Ales Hallsky
November 21 2011, 04:19PM
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I heard them on Gregor's show, I think he came up with them

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#44 Saytalk
November 21 2011, 04:33PM
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Buying him out has left a penalty against our cap for this year and next, so we haven't completely moved on yet. I'm glad he's doing well in Dallas, but it would be bittersweet if we light it up against him and he goes -6 for the game.

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#45 Ales Hallsky
November 21 2011, 04:35PM
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First i heard that omark broke his ankle?!?!

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#46 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 21 2011, 04:41PM
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@Ales Hallsky

briefly mentioned here:

http://oilersnation.com/2011/11/19/gdb-190-fire-up-the-render

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#47 Dodd
November 21 2011, 04:47PM
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Good on you, Brownlee for shoo-ing away any disrespectful knobs. Good to see you exorcising freedoms that a lot of the MSM don't get.

I applaud the success of any NHL'er who battles back from the minors. I gotta say though - the level of unprofessionalism we got for our $5 mill was bad enough for him to have deserved to be done. I'm not even picking sides in Souray vs. Mgmt. Even if his gripes were legitimate, $5 mill says you keep those in a closed office.

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#48 ubermiguel
November 21 2011, 04:56PM
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A-Mc wrote:

Sometimes I wonder why the Oiler's are so Injury Prone.

Is it the Guys we sign?

Is it the style of hockey they are told to play?

or is there something behind the scenes that Souray was acting against?

I'm hoping it's just Bad Luck. I would be fairly disappointed to hear that the Oiler's Players aren't afforded proper healing time because an upper management guy can't afford to look bad.

Unfortunately this is an area I'd never be Certain about unless i was on the Inside.

I'll second that. I always wondered what the grain of truth to Souray's rant was.

I thought the injury situation would improve after gutting the training staff, but the LA/Brule/Fraser Saga suggests the Oilers' doctors or medical staff have some explaining to do.

I don't regret shipping Souray to Hershey (RNH!!!!) but I sure loved the way he played when he was healthy. I was at one Anaheim game where he got at least 10 of those massive shots off, it was a beauty to watch.

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#49 Quicksilver ballet
November 21 2011, 04:56PM
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Тĕплĕнрех Раççей халăхĕсен чĕлхисем статьяна вулăр. Раççей Федерацийĕ — нумай нациллĕ çĕршыв. Тĕпчевçĕсем каланă тăрăх, Раççейри халăхсем 176 чĕлхепе калаçаççĕ. Вĕсен кашнин хăйсен историйĕ, шăпи, аталану çул-йĕрĕ, пуласлăхĕ. Генеалоги енчен (пулса кайни, хурăнташлăх енчен) илсессĕн Раççей халăхĕсен чĕлхисем тĕрлĕ чĕлхе çемйине кĕреççĕ: инди-европа, алтай, ибери-кавказ, урал, палеоази. Кашни чĕлхе çемйи каллех уйрăм ушкăнсене пайланать.

Really feel firm about this.

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#50 Mitch
November 21 2011, 04:57PM
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Robin it`s nice to see Souray get another chance, Sheldon went off on the Oilers management in return he was banished like you would expect with any ``job``. Both the player and organization were humbled in respect and both have clearly moved on in positive direction, which was needed.

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