GOOD OILER, BAD OILER

 

The gulf between a good Oiler and a bad Oiler has never been as wide as the distance between Ryan Smyth and Sheldon Souray of late. Both former assistant captains of the Edmonton Oilers hockey club and both considered to be veteran presences and leaders in the room they could not be any more different.

Sheldon Souray is a self indulgent dink who played a sulky full season in the AHL last year – a reward usually reserved for the injured or those whose game has fallen of a cliff.

Ryan Smyth is a Saint who was told by most everyone that he wouldn’t live up to his contract when he signed it back in ____. Instead of sulking as he bounced between NYI, Colorado and eventually the LA Kings he produced consistently all the way along.

Both players are playing for contracts this year as their current tickets expire at the end of the season and their career outlooks are as different as the two men themselves.

RYAN SMYTH

“Doing the house hunting makes it really hit me that I’m back in Edmonton. This is the place we call home. I’m overwhelmed with joy.” – Ryan Smyth to the Edmonton Sun upon his return.

Overwhelmed with joy? Has anyone ever said this about being traded to Edmonton in the history of the club? We haven’t been overwhelmed with joy since Bud Light 40 oz went on sale in some of the lower 48 states. Ryan Smyth is that happy to be coming back to Edmonton. Wow.

Jerks and consipracy theorists may say that at Smyth’s age he is looking for someone to give him the easy paycheck as he transitions into a guilded retirement. Like so many players around the league, perhaps he is just happy to play anywhere regardless of the quality of the team.

So Mr. Smyth, what is your outlook for the team?

“This is a talented young team Tamby is putting together and getting the five guys he signed on July 1 moved us up in the standings. Already I can feel the energy in the city and with the talk of a new arena, there could be no greater feeling than winning a Stanley Cup here in Edmonton.”’

And this is a guy who was three periods away from winning the Stanley Cup "here in Edmonton."

And what did he look like in those days again?

The very opposite of collecting a cheque.

Damn. What a good Oiler.

SHELDON SOURAY

Speaking of good Oilers, don’t ever mention Sheldon Souray in that capacity.

Ever.

Fresh off a year long "sit in the corner and think about it" in the AHL it is clear that he has neither sat in the corner nor thought about anything. He is still the self indulgent dink he has ever been. Let’s take a look at a few "facts" that he helpfully grumbled to a radio station in Dallas of late:

Souray fact: "Edmonton isn’t a top choice for NHLers. “I guess it’s just not a place that’s attractive to go to, for whatever reason …”

Counter fact: Seems to us that all sorts of people want to play here now. You don’t sign 57 free agents in the first day of free agency if people don’t want to play here. You don’t want to play here Sheldon, neither do players of your ilk who want to collect millions of dollars in a pressure free environment where people don’t care a bit about hockey. Don’t get it twisted.

Souray fact: "Things were derailed in Edmonton because of hand injuries sustained in a fight."

Counter fact: Nice to see that Souray is still having issues with truth telling. Much like the time he claimed "other teams were going to sign me for more before Edmonton made an offer" – later proven false – he claims the hand injury was what sent things off the track.

This is Edmonton numbnuts. Did you happen to notice that we finished back to back last two years in a row? Did you happen to notice the cheques that were arriving from the Katz Corporation on a flat bed truck every two weeks while you ‘tried super hard in the AHL?’

if you were anything other than a Grade A locker room cancer you would have been playing here in Edmonton the entire time while Tambo shopped you around. A hand injury may have taken you out of the NHL, but your character injury kept you on the shelf.

You would think that being passed over on the waiver wire several times and being signed by the Dallas Stars – desperate for D-men at any cost – to a mere 1 year deal might teach the guy some humility. Not Lord Sheldon of Souray though. No he is content to blame the Oilers for his own problems. No ability to bounce back from adversity, no way to man up and take the classy road.

All we want to hear from you from here on out Souray is "I am sad to be retiring after so many great years in the NHL." Good luck with the rest of that career you have.

Damn. What a bad Oiler.

MORE SMYTH OMENS

What could be the craziest omen to date comes from our buddy Mike in Lloydminster. He reports via email that "I was making a sandwich when i looked up at my fruit bowl as saw this…"

We have seen many a banana in our day (that’s what she said) but we have never seen one that looks like this! This is the most Ryan Smyth related banana that the Gods have ever seen fit to issue! Call someone! Guiness book of records! The Vatican! Smyth himself on his solid gold blackberry! People need to know!

Sick photo Mike. It’s clear that the return of Ryan Smyth to Edmonton is fixing the hole in the space-time continuum that has hung over Edmonton since 2006. If you have more Smyth Omen sightings hit up your ol’ pal Wanye at wanyegretz@gmail.com

What a banana.

  • O.C.

    I think Souray is more clueless than douche.

    Mr. “I’m a f**kin All Star” Daniel Heatley has defined the ten steps to becoming “Grand ÜberDouche”.

    As far as 44 being bad news? I don’t buy that. Pronger was a great Oiler and didn’t trash the team… He just had poor judgment away from the rink.

    • Puritania

      Damn that sucks, as much as everyone hated him I loved that bugger. Hope he kicks asses in the east.*

      Wanye that was a truly excellent article, these Smyth omens are making me squee like I just saw a JTT picture on some other Nationnetwork affiliate.

      Janne Niinimaa rocked #44 like a pimp, the number is cursed now but let’s not forget that, that beautiful metalhead wore it well.

      The Stars signed tough son of a bitch Eric Goddard, I forsee some effin’ rough games between us and those dinks.

      I love you #94, LET’S GET THIS F*CKIN’ SEASON STARTED!!!!!

      *props to Oilcruzer for mentioning the best Bubs impression this side of Sunnyvale http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=34581

  • Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"

    Didnt Souray buy the whole oilers team a Meal in New York or something about half way through this season?
    With the type of restaurants these players go to it could easily have been a cheque of over 50,000..
    Just saying, the guy aint all bad..after all, how do we know what he said about edmonton 2 years ago wasnt true? Management will always cover only their own asses..for once a player tried to do the same and he gets treated like trash forever..seriously, yeah he shouldnt have gone public with it..but players arent robots..some will speak their minds and it wont always be music to everyone..those comments he made on that Dallas radio station? Didnt edmonton get voted in the bottom by NHL Allstars? Sorry Wayne..you dont have much weight on this one..I like Smyth..the guys plays with an edge..but whens the last time you see him drop the gloves for a teammate? Souray does it more in one year than Smyth has done in his whole career…just saying..
    Im a huge Smyth fan but he is overrated by every Oiler..bigtime
    ..Souray mustve been real important to everyone here if people are still bitching about a few comments he made two years ago..

    • Buying your teammates dinner for $50.000 grand does not make you a good guy or good teammate! It makes you pretentious!

      How do you know what he said about management 2 years ago was true! Where you there? How come he’s the only one talking?

      Do you live in Edmonton? If you do then your a moron for even bringing up the fact that the NHL players think it’s bad! That’s the single stupidest comment I’ve ever heard! what about the 1.1 million people in the greater Edmonton area?

      Then you say he shouldn’t have said those things to management! then you say it’s ok that he spoke his mind about management and Edmonton on the radio station…..really! Your Surray argument is as lame as your post!

      • Deep Oil

        There does seem to be some proof of poor medical staff though. If what Lombardi revealed about both Fraser and Brule are 100% true then the Oilers medical staff is fairly incompetent. It will cost money but they should scout out sports medicine doctors and general medical staff around North America as it seems whatever they’re doing now in their hiring process just isn’t good enough. So even though he handled it wrong Souray might very well be right about the poor medical staff in Edmonton.

    • To the second part of your ultra lame post!

      When was the last time Smyth droped his gloves for a teammate? Again, your a moron! when did Gretzky ever drop the gloves for a teammate? Or how about Hemsky or Crosby. Dude seriously!

      You say your a Ryan Smyth fan, but he’s over rated by every Oiler? or Oiler fan? Are you including yourself? where you drunk when you wrote this post?
      Your a fan but calling Smyth overrated…big time?

      ~What type of player should Smyth be for you~

      A guy who can play on the PK
      A guy who can play on the PP
      How about a guy who stands in front of the net with no regard to his own safety so another player can take a 90 MPH slap shot.
      A player who is so liked by his teammates in the room.
      A player who had more points then any other Oiler last year.
      A player that plays hurt and plays through more pain then anyone has a right to.
      Humble and grateful to be living in our city.
      A player who’s contributions to the community are well known.
      And the best mullet in the NHL, the boy’s got flow!

  • Puritania

    this crap and the flies it attacts is all you need to know about why edmonton is the end of the line as far as any reasonable NHL player is concerned…. what kind of city counts these low life rants as part of its sports culture?

    I wouldn’t even watch the Canadian Olympic team because Danny Heatley wore the sweater, but reading Wanye makes me want to nominate him for a nobel prize…

    and Souray…how many times do you need to kick a guy in the teeth to make yourself feel good boys? how nasty can you get, ready to lynch anyone that crosses your path…

    and what exactly is the oiler ideal you claim to be standing up for? trading damaged goods? whatever is good about the team you’re dragging it through the mud. little wonder most of the great athletes that have worn the sweater have live elsewhere

    the recent airlift of fresh bums to replace the departing bums signed last year tells you just how pathetic the oilers must appear to the rest of the league…did I see a story anywhere else but here about the oilers during the entire free agency period? no.

    yet to read the local blogs you would have thought ST had morphed into scotty bowman…delusion knows no bounds

    • Puritania

      Souray can continue to sh*t on Edmonton but Wanye can’t open his mouth about the situation. Gotcha.

      Who reads blogs of teams they hate anyway? I don’t cruise Canuck blogs and boards to post uppity and righteous garbage, move along dink.

    • SuntanOil

      It’s not as if we were all sitting around thinking “Gee we haven’t kicked Sheldon Souray in the teeth for a couple of weeks – let’s do that now.” Sheldon was on a Dallas radio station and could have taken the high road, but didn’t, and I for one am not going to waste any level of admiration on a man who while being half-right is too arrogant to admit this also makes him half wrong.

      Maybe I have read different articles on here than you, but i have seen many many takes on here questioning the Oiler’s over this affair, and crediting Souray for many things he ranted about that in hindsight had truth to them.

      Even if he was 100% right in the Spector article (where he seemed to have a high level of self-entitlement), the fact still remains that no one would take a chance on him at even half his salary last year, and this fact still hasn’t seemed to have been grasped by him. It does reflect on his character, and leads us to speculate on where else he may have mislead himself.

      For example, some of us question whether or not he didn’t mislead the Oilers as to his medical condition before signing his big contract with them. We have the right to discuss the possibility.

      As for your first assertion – do you read any other team forums? Team Bulletin Boards? or any fan sites where you are not wearing your rose colored glasses other than this one? I’ll give you a hint if you haven’t. EVERY fan site rants about players current and past. We all have heroes and goats. it’s part of the emotion and devotion that comes with being a fan. We find people we idolize and people we villainize, and someone who speaks publically against my town gets villainized. Period.

      As for your last assertion that we make too big of a deal of Tambo’s free agent dealings., well… … this is an Oiler’s fan site, and to expect anything else would just be really lame.

    • SLAM

      “I wouldn’t even watch the Canadian Olympic team because Danny Heatley wore the sweater, but reading Wanye makes me want to nominate him for a nobel prize…”

      Too bad…you missed some great hockey.

      “and Souray…how many times do you need to kick a guy in the teeth to make yourself feel good boys? how nasty can you get, ready to lynch anyone that crosses your path…”

      1 more than the number of times Souray craps on Edmonton in the media.

      “and what exactly is the oiler ideal you claim to be standing up for? trading damaged goods? whatever is good about the team you’re dragging it through the mud. little wonder most of the great athletes that have worn the sweater have live elsewhere”

      LA knew they were damaged goods. Isn’t LA the team that traded Marco Sturm injured? Injured players get traded all the time. As well, I’m pretty sure where athletes choose to settle down has nothing to do with where they play. I’m sure all those great Red Wing players sure are flocking to Detroit…

      “did I see a story anywhere else but here about the oilers during the entire free agency period? no. ”

      Does anywhere else include TSN? Sportsnet? Maybe you don’t have cable?

      “yet to read the local blogs you would have thought ST had morphed into scotty bowman…delusion knows no bounds”

      I think the blogs have criticized when neccessary.

      What’s the point of posting this drivel anyways? Anger management therapy?

  • Surray is a Scutterin gobsh#*te-

    He throws The Oilers, and the management under the bus using the media to spread his word. Admittedly get’s people fired for it in the process! But that’s ok. ~He only makes 4.5 million~

    I don’t presume to know what happened in that Oilers dressing room for the Oilers to ban Surray from it, but it had to be pretty bad for the Oilers not to have him anywhere near the kids development even though the Oilers could have used the good soldier. He claims it’s all Oilers managements fault and he’s a good boy, see Canadians.

    Then he claims nobody called him or his agent when one of the multiple injuries forces him to the hospital! ~Oh, muffin~ I wasn’t aware the team was suppose to hold his hand while he was in the hospital.

    When a player enters an agreement or contract point in fact the team does own your rights, they pay you a salary, in Surrays case a gross over pay for services rendered or I should say not rendered. In any case you do become a team’s asset. ~ Or haven’t you heard about the life of professional athletes~ Bottom line! The Oilers tried to trade him, then tried to waive him and finally bought him out! ~Because so many teams wanted him~
    I’m bitter because he alienated the team I love! But most of all, I’m bitter because of the way he speaks about the place I call home!!

    Surrays done……One pump chump!

    • Deep Oil

      I am sure if Taylor Hall or high school graduate RNH was in the hospital, this would be front page news with Tambo changing his bedpan. Just goes to show you what length’s GM’s treat their assets, and let others rust.

      Hey Mantooth, the reason Souray did not have any value to the Oilers, is the cost analysis by Lowe and Tambellinin was flawed.

      Souray was a UFA signing, moving him during the 12 month request period was the definition of greedy. It ended up costing money bags (LOL) Katz over $8million dollars for this bad management poker play, when you sit on an asset that cost nothing to acquire, shame on you.

    • paul wodehouse

      …or by March 2nd of next year we all hope he doesn’t think up some phantom injury or say he’s getting death threats that’ll prevent from playing at RX2 where his disloyalty will surely be rewarded by the home town crowd…

  • Yeah Im a Ryan Smyth fan, but I do think he is overrated, by myself included..Seriously, making 6.5 per year and the second best move he has is skating leasury over the blueline and taking a weak slap shot that misses the next 70 percent of the time only to have the other team counter with all the oilers players out of position because Smyth made a dumbass move at the blue line that had a 1 percent chance of going in..

    Yeah he stands in front of the net..and hes pretty good at taking a beating, probably top five in the league at this..

    Gretzky had talent like no other, Crosby is in a league of his own in this Generation..dont compare Smyth to those two players..

    Yeah Souray shouldnt have made those comments for his own sake..but as far as speaking his mind, whats the big deal? Just cuz hes getting paid 4.5 or whatever doesnt mean hes gotta be a robot and only say cliche crap..
    Not everybodies happy with their management where they work..and sometimes it comes out..

    What he said on Dallas Radio..really whats so offensive about that? Its only the truth..yeah this year the Oil signed some cans in free agency..only because on edmonton they knew they would get ice time..on most other teams theyd be guaranteed 4th line duty tops..Belanger may be one exception..