DEC. 30, 2000
Comrie takes advantage of an NHLPA loophole to become eligible for unrestricted free agency before playing an NHL game. Uses the leverage to negotiate a bonus and incentive-laden contract that earns him about $8 million over three seasons, about four times what he'd earn if he didn't have the UFA hammer.
Upon the expiration of his contract, and no longer with the UFA leverage, Comrie tells GM Kevin Lowe he wants to be traded, igniting a firestorm of controversy in Edmonton, where many fans feel betrayed. He misses the first two months of the season during the bitter holdout. The Oilers go 12-14-5 during the feud.
DEC. 10, 2003
Lowe says he'll trade Comrie, as long as Comrie pays back $2.5 million in bonus money he received when he signed his original deal. Lowe contends the money was paid with the understanding Comrie gave up unrestricted free agency to be Edmonton Oilers property till he was 31, not 23.
DEC. 16, 2003
Lowe, struggling to find a decent trade offer in a marketplace that knows he's under the gun, sends Comrie to the Philadelphia Flyers for defencemen Jeff Woywitka (who would later be included in the deal for Chris Pronger), a draft pick that would become Rob Schremp and another that would become Danny Syvret.