TSN hockey guru Bob McKenzie is one of the most solid sources out there, so when he reported earlier today that Ryan Smyth had requested a trade back to the Oilers, it’s understandable that many people got very excited.
Unfortunately, Ryan Smyth has since told the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson that no such request was made.
“Holy cow … that’s the first I’ve heard of that,” Smyth said in an interview. “I have not asked for a trade. I have a year left on my contract. We’ve got some good things here,” said Smyth, who wouldn’t rule out a return here in the summer of 2012 as an unrestricted free-agent, but that’s if the Oilers wanted him.
Is that the end of it? Hardly. McKenzie is too reputable a source to run with something like this without something behind it. I’m not saying that Smyth made the request – I’m more than willing to take him at his word – but somebody told McKenzie that he had. Presumably, that somebody is a higher-up in the Kings organization. For his part, McKenzie is standing by his report:
"For the record, I stand by my story 100 per cent. Totally accurate in every regard. Not much else I can say beyond that. Speaks for itself."
It will be interesting to see what happens next.