York caught off-guard

SCOTT ZERR -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:45 AM ET

To get high-calibre players, the Edmonton Oilers had to give up high-calibre players.

Eric Brewer and Mike York were the casualties of Kevin Lowe's efforts to bolster the Oil lineup with the star power of Chris Pronger and Mike Peca. It was news that caught York off-guard.

"Whether it's the first time or the 15th time you get traded, it's a little bit of a shock," said York last night from his home in Michigan. "I enjoyed my time in Edmonton but I guess it's time to move forward."

York hadn't yet got into the details of where he might fit into the Isles' plans but with Lowe figuring he wasn't a true centre, a good bet might be alongside Alexei Yashin.

He moves back to New York after coming to the Oilers from the Rangers during 2001-02.

"Great memories ... a great bunch of guys," said York, who had 51 points for the Oilers two seasons ago. "It's disappointing to go because of the fact that I was close to the guys and had started to get closer in the community. I guess I go from the Battle of Alberta to the Battle of New York, only on the other side now."

The Oilers gave up a fair chunk to get Pronger, but nothing they weren't prepared to part with.

Brewer, Pronger's teammate on the 2002 Olympic team, was being thrown around as bait at the draft, and Doug Lynch's play had dropped off with the Road Runners last season. Jeff Woywitka was perhaps the hardest to give up, but the Blues made him a priority.

"The Blues were adamant that (Woywitka) be part of the deal," said Lowe.

"He's a young man who's been traded twice already in his career and I said to him that he should consider it as a compliment - that he was in demand and part of two high-profile trades."


Videos

Photos