Guaranteed to happen!

TERRY JONES -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 5:03 PM ET

Twenty-five things guaranteed to happen in the 2005-06 NHL season. Maybe.

1. Theo Fleury leaves hockey team in Ireland saying he couldn't handle constant questions about where he had hidden the pot of gold.

2. Mystery whisky shortage in Ireland inexplicably ends.

3. Israel hires Gary Bettman to deal with Palestinians.

4. Bob Goodenow found to have been actual head of FEMA during hurricane Katrina crisis.

5. Eric Lindros and Jason Allison collide during line change in season opener with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Both out for the season with concussions.

6. Two-hundred-and-sixty-pound Keith Tkachuk asks for trade to Colorado and jersey No. 33 so he can play the season in Patrick Roy's old oversized sweaters.

7. Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky puts on skates and Nagano 1998 Team Canada sweater and scores winning goal in shootout of season opener against Marc Crawford's Vancouver Canucks.

8. Todd Bertuzzi returns to active duty in same season lid-lifter against Phoenix with Nerf hockey stick and gloves, an unreported condition of his reinstatement.

9. Local mayor suggests Columbus changes name to Nashville after Rick Nash scores hattrick in opener. Nashville mayor refuses to make way for Columbus name change with similar move when Jordin Tootoo scores three for Predators in opener.

10. Miroslav Satan says it's pure hell playing on the Island.

11. Sergei Fedorov begins dating Paulina Gretzky.

12. Wayne Gretzky signs Marty McSorley to one-game contract prior to visit to Anaheim to play the Mighty Ducks.

13. U.S. sunbelt city newspaper runs exclusive story on ninth sports page indicating the NHL lockout is expected to end soon.

14. Journal de Montreal breaks story that Youppi has a 'Harvey the Hound' clause in his new Montreal Canadiens contract, giving him the night off for any game in which Craig MacTavish is behind the bench.

15. Hockey Hall of Fame announces special Great One exemption clause to allow early inductions into Hall of Fame - and phenom Sidney Crosby gets in this year.

16. In January, Hockey Night in Canada revises schedule to put all those Saturday-night Toronto Maple Leaf games on Country Canada to move curling to main network, with Leafs mathematically eliminated from playoffs.

17. By February, six goons left unemployed by new NHL rules join Disney On Ice cast of Monsters Inc.

18. Mark Messier coaches sister Mary Kay Messier's son in famed February Quebec Pee Wee tournament. Has two more wins by the end of week than Gretzky does with Phoenix Coyotes.

19. Mike Comrie, also out of work, joins Disney On Ice Snow White show as one of the seven dwarfs.

20. Grumpy complains about NHLPA member taking his job.

21. The Red Mile in Calgary is reduced to the Red Block as Flames don't play host to a Stanley Cup playoff game for the ninth time in the last 10 years.

22. Ryan Smyth flies to Europe for the World Hockey Championships, only to realize halfway over the Atlantic that the Edmonton Oilers are still alive in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

23. Coyotes move franchise back to Winnipeg under the agreement they don't replace Minnesota in division with Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Colorado.

24. Zdeno Chara drafted by Toronto Raptors.

25. Edmonton Oilers win Stanley Cup. NHL governors vote to return to former Collective Bargaining Agreement.


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