It's All About Heatley
Despite not being traded thus far, Dany Heatley is still commanding the attention of the NHL world.
The news of Heatley's trade request came as a bit of a surprise after the once back-to-back 50-goal scorer signed a six-year, $45 million contract extension in 2007. It doesn't seem to matter—the coveted sniper just doesn't want to play another season in Ottawa.
On June 30th, the last day before free agent signing is allowed, two of the six Canadian teams made big adjustments to their 2009-2010 squad, yet TSN, a primarily Canadian news source, had Heatley's story as the main article for most of the day.
The Montreal Canadiens traded Chris Higgins and some minor league players to the New York Rangers for Scott Gomez and some of the Ranger's minor leaguers, while the Calgary Flames inked top free agent defenseman Jay Bouwmeester to a five-year deal, and still Dany Heatley's decision not to get traded to the Edmonton Oilers headlines the news.
TSN reported that Senators GM Bryan Murray was offered Andrew Cogliano, Dustin Penner, and Ladislav Smid for Heatley, which he accepted, assuming Heatley would waive his no-trade clause to ungrudgingly fulfill both his own and the Senators requirements.
Minutes later, however, TSN was quick to report Heatley did not waive the clause and as 11:59 PM on July 1st, the Senators will be required to pay Heatley a $4 million signing bonus.
Murray was not shy to tell reporters that if he did not receive a substantial trade offer from another club by July 1st, Heatley would remain a Senator for the 2009-2010 season.
All of this information draws questions about Heatley's motives: If he wanted to be traded, and undoubtedly was aware of Murray's deadline, why then would he reject a perfectly reasonable offer from a decent team? Sure, Heatley had expressed more interest in the Rangers, but if he wanted to get traded, he should not have rejected the Oiler's offer.
Perhaps Heatley is hoping for that signing bonus in addition to a trade, or perhaps he is waiting for a suitor like the Rangers to offer the Sens a acceptable trade. The Oilers' offer is still on the table, and it now a matter of hours before his 09-10 fate is decided and his spotlight fades.
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