Stalled Souray situation holds up other deals
With Edmonton Oilers training camp less than a month away, disgruntled defenceman Sheldon Souray still doesn’t have a change of address while free-agent centres Sam Gagner and Andrew Cogliano don’t have contracts.
Needless to say, there is a gulf between what the Oilers and best buddies Gagner and Cogliano feel they are worth after three seasons of playing in the NHL.
They would have been signed long ago, but the Souray soap opera is a pricklier situation. It would not be a sound idea to have the veteran blue-liner on the ice at training camp, even if he has two years left with the Oilers at $5.4 million US per season. That’s because he would likely be a major distraction, just as Dany Heatley was last summer with the Senators in Ottawa.
Oilers general manager Steve Tambellini said there has been no line drawn in the sand with Souray or his agent Paul Theofanous.
“We’re still trying hard to make a deal … I don’t want to go there yet,” said Tambellini, who hasn’t had a lineup of suitors chasing Souray mainly because he has two years left on his hefty contract, plus there are nagging injury concerns.
Tambellini certainly is not in a position of strength, trying to move a guy who doesn’t want to be here.
“I don’t know if this is a similar situation to Ottawa’s with Heatley … all I know is it’s not the best possible position to be in.”