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Old 06-02-2003, 06:04 PM   #1
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Gretzky Coming Back!!

I would love to make it out to Edmonton for this...it sounds totally wild! I'm sure it will be televised...

http://www.canoe.ca/EdmontonSports/e...6-02-0069.html

99 memories revisited
Gretzky's comin' back to play some hockey!


By TERRY JONES, EDMONTON SUN


ANAHEIM, California -- If they build it, Wayne Gretzky will come.

If they build an outdoor rink in Commonwealth Stadium and play on Nov. 22, Wayne Gretzky will play.

"It will be my one and only,'' said Gretzky. "I said I'd never play an oldtimers' game. But this one is special. It's in Edmonton. It's outdoors in front of 60,000 fans.

"It'll be the only time you ever see me play in an oldtimers' game.''

It's the plan to hold a regular-season game between the Montreal Canadiens and the Edmonton Oilers in Commonwealth Stadium - with the Oilumni vs. Les Ancient Canadiens as a preliminary.

That is, of course, if the NHLPA ever signs off on it. And Gretzky says they can't take this game away from hockey and a franchise celebrating its 25th season in the league in a stadium celebrating its 25th anniversary?

"I'm sure they will,'' said No. 99 of the players association giving their blessing to the game - the only thing stopping the game from being a go.

"I can't imagine them not. I'm hoping it's more a formality than anything else. It's really special. It's a unique event outside. It would be great for everybody. It would be great for hockey, great for Edmonton.''

Gretzky said, if his backyard rink doesn't count, he's only played one outdoor game "since I was six.''

OUTDOOR GAME IN VEGAS

That one was after he left Edmonton.

"We had an exhibition game in Las Vegas with the L.A. Kings,'' he said.

Gretzky was back on skates this summer for a fantasy camp.

"I was a third-line centre at best,'' he said, taking time to sit down with The Sun before doing his duties as the commissioner of the Bud Lite Bubbleboys Stanley Cup hockey tournament here yesterday.

"Ah, I was OK. I played for all the teams. I played for about four hours.''

This one will be less than a regulation-length game, possibly in toe-freezing conditions. But Gretzky says it'll be a blast.

"I hope The Flower plays,'' he said of Guy Lafleur. "It would be great if he plays.''

Gretzky said the Old Oilers ought to be favoured over the Old Canadiens in the game, regardless.

"I'm sure all our guys will play if Kevin Lowe asks them ... Paul Coffey, Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson. I'm sure they'll all show up.''

Well, maybe not Mark Messier. He might be on for one last year with the Rangers.

"We're a little younger. The Oilers are always a little younger than the other team. Even in an oldtimers' game, the Oilers are the youngest team,'' he laughed.

"I'm really looking forward to it. I'd bring my boys up there.''

Gretzky says he won't be bringing Mike Weir to Calgary for his Wayne Gretzky & Friends golf tournament to play with himself, Brett Hull and Jarome Iginla like he did last summer in Edmonton.

"We made that decision last September,'' he said of a conflict on Weir's schedule combined with the timing of the event in which Ian Leggatt will sub for Weir.

Gretzky said he felt like a lot of Canadians must have felt when his Olympic team won the gold medal in Salt Lake when Weir won the Masters this year.

"I felt like I won a green jacket,'' he said.

GOALIE EQUIPMENT

Gretzky allowed himself to touch briefly on the state of the game in these Stanley Cup playoffs which have largely been panned as boring.

"The goaltending equipment is too big,'' he said. "That's the biggest thing. We've got to get the goaltending equipment back to the size it was in the '70s and '80s.''

And he laughed at commissioner Gary Bettman's uttering (made in less than total seriousness) that maybe the nets should be made bigger.

"I believe in hockey heritage,'' he said. "Fans want to see 93 goals and 50 goals in 39 games into the same size net. Get the goal equipment back to the old size and there should be a lot more goals. When you have a picnic table guarding the net it's pretty hard to score. But I don't believe you can change the history of the game by changing the size of the nets. The good goalies would still be the good goalies.

WOODEN STICKS

"We need to get back to the wood sticks, too. The players have no feel for the puck. They do shoot the puck harder, but they have no feel.''

The Phoenix Coyotes boss said the success of the Mighty Ducks is great for hockey in the southwest.

"It's the first time in a lot of years they've been talking about the playoffs in the NHL around here,'' said Gretzky, who last went to the final with the L.A. Kings against the Montreal Canadiens in '93.

"Win or lose, they've been great for hockey in this area.''

And as for the state of bubble hockey?

"Bubble hockey is ahead of the WHA,'' said the commissioner who played his first year for the Oilers in the World Hockey Association. "It's better run.''
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Old 06-02-2003, 07:48 PM   #2
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Bubble Hockey

I would fly to Edmonton for that!!!!! That would be awesome.
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Old 06-02-2003, 08:01 PM   #3
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Wow, that would be fucking awesome to see.


Oilers Oldtimers... wow, now that was a team.
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Old 06-03-2003, 12:46 AM   #4
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Thanks Michael.

That's exciting news... and I think I can handle the 3 hour drive up there to go... but there's always bloody mid-terms around that time. Oh well, screw'em.

See you in Edmonton.
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:07 AM   #5
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Cujo, if your'e there, I'm there! I have finals at that time, too, though. Ah, what the heck! How often do you get to see the Oilers of th 80s play against the Canadiens of the 70s? Not too often in my estimation. That would be amazing, though. 60,000 fans!
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:09 AM   #6
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How do you get tickets?

If it's capacity 60,000... I think I'd be able to land a few seats. But then again, it is Edmonton in late November. Friggin' freezin' my friend.
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:14 AM   #7
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Re: Gretzky Coming Back!!

Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Griffiths
"The goaltending equipment is too big,'' he said. "That's the biggest thing. We've got to get the goaltending equipment back to the size it was in the '70s and '80s.''
See, even Wayne agrees with me

PS- Terry Jones writes some awesome stuff for the Oilers. If you can get ahold of a volume he wrote on the Oil's first 20 years, it's a great read. Lot's of Wayne in it... as well as a certain "save"
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:26 AM   #8
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griffiths, put a book in front of your pants, nobody wants to see that

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Old 06-03-2003, 03:40 AM   #9
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Re: Re: Gretzky Coming Back!!

Quote:
Originally posted by cujo


See, even Wayne agrees with me

PS- Terry Jones writes some awesome stuff for the Oilers. If you can get ahold of a volume he wrote on the Oil's first 20 years, it's a great read. Lot's of Wayne in it... as well as a certain "save"
Yeah, I think I saw that book on ebay. Hey! You'll never believe what I just bought!!!! I'm so excited. I found the ultimate Edmonton Oiler package on ebaby...it includes every Stanley Cup winning game -- all 5 of them! I'm buying the first 4, all the ones with Gretz. The original package also included the 1990 win, plus a whole shit load of Oiler hockey cards. It was like $95 Cnd., so I opted to pay less and just get the tapes.

I want to get Classic ESPN as well...they show a lot of those old games. Hey Chiz!! What the hell are you doing back here? I thought you fell off the face of the earth. You get espn classic, right? You lucky bastard. I'm jealous.
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:47 AM   #10
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hey griffs, i heard you like to suck gretzkys great one
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:51 AM   #11
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Who hasn't indulged themselves by doing a wrap around "behind the net" in Gretzky's "office"?...

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Old 06-03-2003, 03:53 AM   #12
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i think griffiths is just in awe of gretzkys great "stick handling" abilities
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:59 AM   #13
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Well, he did always have the shiniest stick, hey Chiz? But Chiz, I've got to say, is that the best you can come up with??? You need to be a little more creative my good man!
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Old 06-03-2003, 07:32 AM   #14
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Don't rule me out of this game.....I can fly up there in a second! I want to go.

Especially if Jacques Lemaire is playing!
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Old 06-03-2003, 01:41 PM   #15
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hey i want to fly up there and see this with y'all!
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