Yesterday’s interview between Sportsnet Vancouver and Milan Lucic seemed pretty innocent at first. How’s your offseason going? Let’s talk about the Vancouver Giants. Should Brad Marchand be clubbing defenceless players with rabbit punches?
You know, typical stuff.
Then, it got weird. It got weird when Sportsnet 650 Vancouver started asking Milan Lucic about possibly finishing his career with Vancouver. That might not always be a bad question, but it’s one that you’re probably going to get a cookie-cutter response.
Let’s listen to it.
Question: (starts at 8:50 in the link) “You’ve been in Edmonton for a few years now, it probably hasn't gone the way you initially envisioned. I wonder this, I mean, you’re a former Vancouver Giant, you’re a guy from here, could you ever see a day where you finish your career here in Vancouver?”
This is an easy one, right? The response is pretty self-explanatory. Something along the lines of “I’m really happy to be an Edmonton Oiler, we’ve got a great bunch of guys in the room, we’ve got up and coming talent, and we’ll be back for the playoff run in 2019-20”.
Or, something like that. Even if Lucic really, really wants to be a Vancouver Canuck, you don’t usually talk about wanting to be a Vancouver Canuck if you’ve just finished your third year of a 7 year contract (with a full NMC). Right? I mean come on, that would never happen. Right?
Lucic: “Uh, it’s definitely something I wouldn’t rule out. Obviously, something that potentially could happen, like you said, things haven’t gone that well for me here with the Oilers, especially the last year and a half, so, new GM, new coach, which haven’t even been named yet coming in so, you don’t know what their plan is moving forward and stuff like that, and uh, it’s like i said, it’s definitely something that potentially could happen. and whatever happened from 2011 and all that type of stuff I think, for me, especially it’s all water under the bridge as far as the tension after all of that. It’s still a place I love to come home to, it’s still a place I love to go visit,uh, I think the Canucks right now are a very exciting team, I love what Jim’s (Benning) done as far as building the team within through the draft and developing players, he’s done a great job, I think Travis (Green) has done a real good job as well, from the coaching standpoint. So like I said, it’s an exciting team, it’s a growing team, and you never know what the future has in store for you. I think, I remember doing an interview back in ‘07 before the Mem(orial) Cup and I said it would always be a dream of mine to someday play for the Canucks, and you still have that kid inside you, you still have that dream of playing for your hometown team, and like I said, you never know what the future has in store and what potentially can happen.”
I don’t think I’ve ever heard a player sound like he was making an audition tape for another club while currently employed by that club’s rival. That’s pretty much what happened here.
Milan Lucic hasn’t had a good time in Edmonton over the past two seasons, that’s not a surprise to hear him vocalize. But this sure sounds like he’s ready to move on now. Right, now. Right now. To the Vancouer Canucks. Right now.
SO MAKE IT HAPPEN
The Oilers need to make this happen. The best case scenario is to take no cap in return. Lucic has a monstrous cap hit of 24MM coming up in the next four years, and that will no doubt be tough to swallow
Can the Oilers get Vancouver (or someone else) to wipe it from Edmonton’s books?