SUN Hockey Pool

Trading places

Edmonton Oilers' Curtis Glencross skates off the ice after fighting Calgary Flames' Cory Sarich on...

Edmonton Oilers' Curtis Glencross skates off the ice after fighting Calgary Flames' Cory Sarich on Monday February 4, 2008. (Darryl Dyck/Sun Media)

JOHN SHORT

, Last Updated: 8:08 AM ET

On the face of it, the Oilers are planning to lose Curtis Glencross.

And it looks like finding room for Ryan Potulny where Glencross used to be is an update.

To make the deal with Philadelphia, Edmonton had to give up Danny Syvret, who surprised Kevin Lowe and others with a good showing at his first Oilers training camp a few seasons back.

But Syvret's time has passed in the local organization. He's classed as a "fringe" major leaguer - a depth player.

You could say the same about Potulny, for sure, and about Glencross before the Oilers picked him up last season.

To me, this is a good move. If Glencross and his agent believe the player is worth a massive amount of money after finding NHL success in only a partial season, I hope he gets it.

Somewhere else, in free agency.

FINANCIAL FOLLIES: YET AGAIN, THERE IS TALK OF DROPPING NHL FRANCHISES IN AREAS WHERE OWNERS LOSE A LOT OF MONEY.

Accountants say the Phoenix Coyotes lost $30 million last year. Allegedly, the Atlanta Thrashers and Florida Panthers wallow in red ink, too. But creative accountants have ways of making sure the public will never know how much money has left the pocket of ownership groups.

Eventually, Gary Bettman is going to realize that hockey won't work financially in several places where the game was supposed to flourish forever.

He was wrong, quite often.

Changes are inevitable.

One of the Nashville principals reportedly faces bankruptcy and serious legal issues. Other NHL owners of recent vintage - on Long Island and in Buffalo, for example - traced a similar path.

My guess would be that Seattle - having lost the NBA Sonics - is a better potential location for the NHL than many of the southern markets now in place.

If it mattered, you could say the same about Winnipeg and Quebec City. Arena upgrades are necessary, but they're not impossible.

Why doesn't it matter? Because too many owners and Mr. Bettman have made it clear they don't want more Canadian involvement than they have at this moment.

Those head-in-the-sand millionaires deserve whatever lousy fate they encounter.

DESERVED BETTER: TO LOOK AT THE AMERICAN LEAGUE BASEBALL STANDINGS IS A PERPETUAL SHOCK THESE DAYS.

I grew up as a keen supporter of the Detroit Tigers. They were supposed to be a shoo-in as Central Division champs.

As it turns out, they can do everything with a baseball except hit it, throw it, field it, run after or catch it.

The same sad scene exists in Seattle, where the Mariners, on merit, are far behind the all-California Angels of La Brea or Cucamonga or whereever.

To Edmonton baseball fans, the saddest note may be that Detroit GM Dave Dombrowski and Seattle boss Bill Bavasi both played positive roles in the growth of pro ball here.

Dombrowski was the farm director of the Chicago White Sox, who sent Ron Kittle here to make a big sensation. Bavasi did the same job for the Angels, who won PCL championships because he sent a combination of solid journeymen and bright prospects to our town.

It's too bad that those bright, likeable men are struggling, and even worse that high-quality pro ball left us not long after Dombrowski, Bavasi and Mel Kowalchuk moved on.


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