SUN Hockey Pool

Tension of deadline was visible

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 9:44 AM ET

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- It was a tense few minutes leading into the deadline yesterday, with Craig MacTavish trying to run a morning skate while his players wondered which one of them would be called off the ice and told he was moving.

To make matters more nerve-racking, Oilers PR guy J.J. Hebert had MacTavish's cellphone at rinkside, in case GM Kevin Lowe wanted to call and discuss a potential deal.

With half an hour to the deadline, the hotline rang, Hebert pounded on the glass to get MacTavish's attention and the coach hustled over for the 11th-hour summit.

On the ice, the players perked up like deer that just caught whiff of a hunter. When MacTavish hung up and returned to the skate, nobody wanted to make eye contact.

Nobody got the shoulder tap, as Marty Reasoner was on a plane to San Jose when the trade went down.

"It was a little wild, but that's trade deadline day," said MacTavish.

"Things happen in a hurry. You don't want it to be too big of a distraction, but when the phone comes out in practice, it's a bit of a distraction."


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