It was on this day, back in 2007, that Ryan Smyth was traded to the New York Islanders in exchange for Robert Nilsson, Ryan O’Marra and a first-round draft pick in 2007 (Alex Plante).
For an Oilers fan, the Ryan Smyth trade has to be one of the darkest moments in team history. As I’m sure you’ve all heard, the Oilers and Smyth were reportedly only $100,000 apart on a new contract before Kevin Lowe decided to pull the trigger on the trade that sent Smyth to the Islanders. History was not kind to the Oilers for this trade as none of the pieces acquired really worked out all that well, apart from Robert Nilsson that had some moderate success in his first couple seasons.
For me personally, I’ll never forget watching the coverage on Sportsnet and having Eklund “confirm” that the Oilers and Smyth had landed on a new deal only to have him moved moments later. I’m not a big grudge guy, but I’ll hold one against him forever for giving me false hope on that one. On the bright side, this website was formed from the ashes of that trade after initially launching BringRyanHome.com shortly after the trade. The traffic on that site erupted, giving Wanye and the Squire the idea of launching Oilersnation.com.
Remember the press conference at the airport? It was a sad, horrible day.