July 5, 2008

Kevin Lowe and Brian Burke: Still Not BFF's

Interesting afternoon today. I head on over to The Team 1260's website to try and catch James Mirtle on an appearance. I was a tad late, but searched around to see if I could download a podcast or replay of the interview. No dice, but I came across something just as good.

I clicked on the "Listen Now" link just in time to hear the entire Kevin Lowe interview which you'll all be hearing about for the next few days. The interview was supposed to be about Marian Hossa and the Oilers free agency moves I guess, but it was basically Lowe responding to Brian Burke's claims yesterday about the offer-sheet controversy from last summer being the reason for free agents being overpaid.

If The Team 1260 would offer podcasts or interview replays, I'd transcribe the first 5-10 minutes, but alas, I'll rely on TSN for some of the good quotes:

"Where do I begin?," started Lowe. "He's a moron, first of all. Secondly, he really believes that any news for the NHL is good news. Thirdly, he loves the limelight and I don't think anyone in hockey will dispute that. Lastly, he's in a pathetic hockey market where they can't get on any page of the newspaper let alone the front page of the sports, so any of this stuff carries on."

....

"I mean, if he wants to debate what our offer sheet did to them or to the salaries, anytime," he explained to Team 1260. "The reality is, Rick Nash's contract a number of years ago, (Patrice) Bergeron's and (Ilya) Kovalchuk's; that sets the standard - that's been going on for decades. I'm sick and tired of it. I know everybody in hockey is. I know our peers are like, 'Well, that's Burkie.' This guy is an absolute media junkie and I guess he's achieving what he wants because he gets his name in the headlines. But the reality is, I hate the fact that my name is linked to his. He's an underachieving wanna-be in terms of success in the NHL. He won a Stanley Cup? Great. I've won six Stanley Cups, you want to count rings? Who cares, it's just a little pathetic that he carries on."

....

"Here's a fact - he left (former Canucks GM) Dave Nonis nothing in Vancouver," he explained. "Nothing. He destroyed that team. If it wasn't for Nonis' incredible deals - to con Mike Keenan to get (Roberto) Luongo in Vancouver - that team was taking a nose dive two years ago."

"I mean, that's his M.O., but no one says anything. He goes into Anaheim and he inherits an incredible team. He gets Chris Pronger - not because of our relationship, it just so happened we had five or six teams and targeted their assets. We had Florida, Anaheim, Philadelphia, San Jose and Los Angeles. He just happened to throw enough assets our way to get the player. Kudos to him. He recognizes that at the end of the day, you throw enough assets, you get the best player and you get a good deal. You never know in this business if you're going to win at the end of the day. He could have just decimated the franchise forever. I'll tell you this, they have not much coming. Bobby Ryan has been a questionable pick at No. 2 (overall in 2005), and up until this draft, they tried to move down and did a nice job of trying to replenish their depth chart. They had nothing coming, and that appears to be his M.O."

We're pretty much at the point where there's going to be some sort of confrontation between the two in the near future. Burke won't let the Dustin Penner saga rest and Lowe is more than happy to return any barbs thrown his way.

Ballhype: hype it up!

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