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Forums :: Blog World :: Matt Ross: The Trade: 8-9-1988
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Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Aug 9 @ 8:21 PM ET
Matt Ross: The Trade: 8-9-1988
pucks4all
Season Ticket Holder
Philadelphia Flyers
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Joined: 07.01.2011

Aug 9 @ 8:56 PM ET
There’s no argument. He’s the greatest of any time.
Sams_Dog
Pittsburgh Penguins
Joined: 11.03.2005

Aug 9 @ 9:27 PM ET
I still remember reading the headline in the Pittsburgh newspaper the day o the trade: "Greatzky to kings Imminent." I had to read it a few times to understand and have it sink in. I was shocked like everyone else. It made no sense.

No question that the trade was an enormous boon the NHL, more than they ever expected.the league took off after that deal. Probably wouldn't have teams in Anaheim, Arizona, San jose, Vegas, Florida without that happening.

When I think of this trade I always wonder what would have happened in Edmonton had he stayed. Would they have won more Cups? Hard to believe they wouldn't have. But the Kings were exciting to watch with him on the team.
tkecanuck341
Los Angeles Kings
Location: Irvine, CA
Joined: 06.25.2009

Aug 9 @ 11:10 PM ET
These two statements seem to be contradictory:

Pocklington and and Glen Sather (Oilers GM) tried to cancel the deal in the eleventh hour. They pulled Gretzky aside right before the press conference and told him they would call it off, but Gretz refused. Pocklington said:

"My mistake was not going over to him and putting my arm around him and saying, 'Wayne, it's OK, pal. If you want to call it off, let's do it.'"

- Matt Ross


The first paragraph says that they asked Gretzky if he wanted to call it off and he refused, the second says that Pocklington regrets not asking him.
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Aug 10 @ 12:30 AM ET
These two statements seem to be contradictory:



The first paragraph says that they asked Gretzky if he wanted to call it off and he refused, the second says that Pocklington regrets not asking him.

- tkecanuck341


I don’t think so. They did ask him and I think Pocklington regrets not asking him in a way that was more genuine and drove home to Wayne that they truly wanted him there and that the trade was probably a mistake. Hence why he said he wished he would have put his arm around him, etc.

Everything I’ve watched and read about it over the years has always made me feel that the relationship between Wayne, Sather and especially Pocklington had got so strained that it was beyond repair. I think the weight and gravity of trading the best player in the world really hit Sather and Pocklington and they tried to stop it at the last minute. Gretz has said that he was pretty furious about how things went leading up to the presser and he made up his mind that he was moving on from the Oilers - essentially sticking it to them when they changed their minds at the last second and tried keeping him.

I think if they had come to him earlier, things could have been salvaged. He probably would have been an Oiler for life, but, by the time they did come to him, the damage had already been done.

That’s how I’ve interpreted things.
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Aug 10 @ 12:33 AM ET
I still remember reading the headline in the Pittsburgh newspaper the day o the trade: "Greatzky to kings Imminent." I had to read it a few times to understand and have it sink in. I was shocked like everyone else. It made no sense.

No question that the trade was an enormous boon the NHL, more than they ever expected.the league took off after that deal. Probably wouldn't have teams in Anaheim, Arizona, San jose, Vegas, Florida without that happening.

When I think of this trade I always wonder what would have happened in Edmonton had he stayed. Would they have won more Cups? Hard to believe they wouldn't have. But the Kings were exciting to watch with him on the team.

- Sams_Dog


Totally agree on that second paragraph, Sams_Dog

I’ve thought about what would have happened if they kept him around, too. I have to believe a lot more winning. Haha. I guess you need to factor in if they could keep the guys around him and so forth.

Def fun to think about “what could have been,” but I think it shaped up pretty awesome for the league in the end.
TommyGTrain
New York Rangers
Location: Part of NJ where its Taylor Ham not pork roll
Joined: 05.19.2017

Aug 10 @ 1:55 AM ET
I wonder what the offers were from NY and Detroit that were rejected?
RafiDRW
Detroit Red Wings
Location: Bill Cosby’s Magic Wiener, TN
Joined: 04.16.2016

Aug 10 @ 5:54 AM ET
I wonder what the offers were from NY and Detroit that were rejected?
- TommyGTrain

There were rumors of it being Steve Yzerman in the trade. I’m not sure how truthful those rumors are, just what has circulated over the years.
jimbo83
New York Rangers
Location: LETS GO RANGERS, NY
Joined: 06.27.2007

Aug 10 @ 7:00 AM ET
I wonder what the offers were from NY and Detroit that were rejected?
- TommyGTrain


here you go

Reports from the New York Times in 1988 indicate that Rangers GM Phil Espositio was approached by Edmonton GM Glen Sather about Gretzky at the draft that June.

The Oilers said that they approached the Rangers because their owners at the time, Gulf and Western, "could afford him."

Espositio said at the time that he was interested in Gretzky but that once they started discussing terms he lost interest.

The Rangers GM said at the time that it would be great to have Gretzky but "who's he going to play with."

In recent years, Esposito said that the Rangers and Oilers agreed on players but could not agree on money.

Esposito said that the Rangers were prepared to send Kelly Kisio, Tomas Sandstrom and John Vanbiesbrouck to Edmonton.
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Aug 10 @ 7:32 AM ET
here you go

Reports from the New York Times in 1988 indicate that Rangers GM Phil Espositio was approached by Edmonton GM Glen Sather about Gretzky at the draft that June.

The Oilers said that they approached the Rangers because their owners at the time, Gulf and Western, "could afford him."

Espositio said at the time that he was interested in Gretzky but that once they started discussing terms he lost interest.

The Rangers GM said at the time that it would be great to have Gretzky but "who's he going to play with."

In recent years, Esposito said that the Rangers and Oilers agreed on players but could not agree on money.

Esposito said that the Rangers were prepared to send Kelly Kisio, Tomas Sandstrom and John Vanbiesbrouck to Edmonton.

- jimbo83


Awesome stuff, Jimbo. Thanks for sharing.

Yzerman would have been wild.

I bet a bunch of teams probably just didn’t have the players/money to satisfy what Edmonton was looking for, but they probably still put pitches out there. I’d love to see what all those were, you know?

The trade is so interesting because I can’t think of a time when a star star athlete had his pick of where to go and ended up choosing a struggling team. I know the examples exists, but I can’t think of any at the moment. The Kings were 10+ games below .500 in the previous couple years before Gretzky joined.




gonch
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: toronto, ON
Joined: 02.20.2007

Aug 11 @ 11:32 AM ET
A great tribute, thank you
Only_A_Ladd
Los Angeles Kings
Location: An attempt to educate are failing youth on reality..., CA
Joined: 06.06.2013

Monday @ 9:19 AM ET
Gretzky was house-sitting for Alan Thicke and watching his son, Robin, when he got the news that the deal was done.


Great stuff, Matt, but you buried the lede!
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Monday @ 12:03 PM ET
A great tribute, thank you
- gonch


You got it, Gonch
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Monday @ 12:03 PM ET
Great stuff, Matt, but you buried the lede!
- Only_A_Ladd


?
Only_A_Ladd
Los Angeles Kings
Location: An attempt to educate are failing youth on reality..., CA
Joined: 06.06.2013

Monday @ 12:31 PM ET
?
- Matt.Ross


https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/bury_the_lede

"Gretzky was house-sitting for Alan Thicke and watching his son, Robin, when he got the news that the deal was done."

Jokes, Matt, jokes.
RogerRoeper
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Toronto, ON
Joined: 03.27.2007

Monday @ 12:35 PM ET
There’s no argument. He’s the greatest of any time.
- pucks4all

Stats don't lie. He has more assists alone than anyone in history has total points. No one has dominated a sport like that.
Matt Ross
Joined: 06.01.2019

Monday @ 12:35 PM ET
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/bury_the_lede

"Gretzky was house-sitting for Alan Thicke and watching his son, Robin, when he got the news that the deal was done."

Jokes, Matt, jokes.

- Only_A_Ladd




Well played, Only_A_Ladd. Haha.
Only_A_Ladd
Los Angeles Kings
Location: An attempt to educate are failing youth on reality..., CA
Joined: 06.06.2013

Monday @ 1:01 PM ET
Stats don't lie. He has more assists alone than anyone in history has total points. No one has dominated a sport like that.
- RogerRoeper


Agree. I try to make the argument for Mario but I can't. It all comes back to this.