Ranking the 5 Most Unbelievable Moments in Edmonton Oilers History
From monumental trades to Cinderella playoff runs, there are certain events that have helped shape the culture of the Oilers franchise.
Unfortunately for the Oilers’ fanbase, most of the club’s unbelievable moments have led to heartache, but the five-time Stanley Cup champions have had a few moments of jubilation that have taken the NHL world by surprise.
Here is a look at the five most unbelievable moments in Edmonton Oilers History.
5: Steve Smith’s Own Goal
With less than 15 minutes to go in the third period against the Calgary Flames in the 1985-86 playoffs, Steve Smith scored one of the most infamous goals in Oilers history.
Unfortunately for Smith, the goal was on his own net, which ultimately led to the Oilers exit from the playoffs and erased the Oilers chance of winning three straight championships.
Though the Oilers would go onto to win the cup the following year, thanks to Smith’s unforgettable own-goal, Oilers fans will always wonder “what if?”
4: Ryan Smyth’s Trade
When the Oilers decided to trade Ryan Smyth during the 2007 season, it was eerily similar to when Peter Pocklington sold Wayne Gretzky nearly 20 years earlier.
Thanks to a contract dispute, Smyth was shipped out when it appeared the sides were only a few thousand dollars apart.
Smyth was the heart and soul of the Oilers at the time, and his exit was all too similar to the tearful goodbye delivered by The Great One when he was traded to Los Angeles.
The outpouring of fan response was incredible, as it was clear that Smyth didn't want to leave Edmonton, and the Oilers reluctantly felt as though they had to trade him rather than risk losing the winger for nothing at the end of the season.
3: All of Wayne Gretzky’s Accomplishments in Edmonton
From 50 goals in 39 games to amassing an astonishing 163 points in a single season, the list of unbelievable moments that Wayne Gretzky accomplished in an Oilers uniform is almost too hard to comprehend, and it is too difficult to select only one.
Most of Gretzky’s records will never be broken, and fans of the Edmonton Oilers were remarkably lucky to have arguably the greatest player in the history of the NHL play in for their team.
But perhaps the biggest unbelievable moment of Gretzky's tenure in Edmonton was his wedding to Janet Jones. It was as if it was a royal wedding with the outpouring of fan support gathered to witness Edmonton's adopted son get married.
Streets were lined as Gretzky and Jones paraded around Edmonton after leaving the church, a true sight to behold.
2: The Miraculous 2006 Stanley Cup Run
When the Edmonton Oilers traded for Chris Pronger in 2006, they would have never guessed that his addition (as well as a couple other key role players) would have helped propel the team to within one game of capturing the franchises’ sixth Stanley Cup championship.
As the eighth-seeded team in the Western Conference, the Oilers shocked the NHL world by eliminating perennial powerhouse teams such as the Detroit Red Wings, San Jose Sharks and the Anaheim Mighty Ducks on the way to the finals against Carolina.
Unfortunately, the Oilers came up just short, but the entire playoff run was unbelievable to watch.
1: "The Trade"
In 1988, the Edmonton Oilers shocked the entire hockey world and (perhaps for the betterment of the game) changed the landscape of hockey in North America when they traded Wayne Gretzky to Los Angeles.
It is perhaps the biggest moment in Oilers history, and is one of those moments where Oilers fans would be able to tell you where they were and what they were doing when they first heard the news.
Though the Oilers would go on to win the cup the season following the trade, the franchise would never be the same.