ESPN's John Buccigross has become an internet sensation in a matter of hours, all thanks to an innocent twitter update pertaining to a pending trade involving Dany Heatley (who else?) He wouldn't be the first to set blogger's tongues wagging on the topic, and certainly won't be the last. Mere hours after the news broke, the general managers of all three teams involved were in full-fledged damage control, with responses ranging from Dean Lombardi's eloquent and well-versed "complete bull," to Murray's quick-and-to-the-point "it's simply not true," to Wilson's highly dramatic "it's an absolute fabrication."
While it is unlikely this deal will actually come to fruition, the Senators later added fuel to the fire by announcing that Heatley will not be attending a team golf tournament on Friday, encouraging speculation that the much maligned winger will indeed be dealt by tomorrow. Another evening spent chasing details on a rumour that turned out to be false...such is the life of a hockey blogger. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted. When will we learn not to trust ESPN's "sources" for hockey news and rumours?
Lost amidst all the Heatley trade talk, former Flame Theoren Fleury was reinstated by the NHL today after a meeting with Gary Bettman and Bill Daly. Six years after Fleury was forced into retirement due to violation of the league's substance abuse policy, the NHL has opened its doors to the fiesty 41-year-old, who has now been sober for four years. While this is a great feel-good story and certainly a welcome distraction from the Bettman vs. Balsille courtroom drama, the fragile state of the NHLPA, and Heatley's next possible trade destination, the question remains: will any GM actually take a chance on the pint-sized pest?
Fleury says he has received interest from teams, but "doesn't want to name the cities without their consent." With only a few days remaining until training camp opens for most teams, there is still a chance Fleury could receive an invitation. Who knows, he just may be the Bill Guerin to your Penguins, the Joe Nieuwendyk to your Dallas Stars or...I don't really know where I'm going with this, but what I mean to say is he could turn out to be that missing piece that pushes the team that signs him over the hump.
Unlikely, but possible. Then again, hasn't that been the story of Fleury's NHL career to this day?