Fri Jul 31 06:35pm EDT
It wasn't when Heatley rejected their escape plan from the Senators -- twice. It wasn't when Senators management started flying trial balloons about bringing Heatley back next season. Maybe it was when the Oilers' desperate infotainment package to Heatley didn't convince him that Edmonton isn't just home to Canada's largest concert organ -- it could be his home, too.
Whatever the case, the Oilers formally announced today that they're tired of being the fat girl at the dance ("More To Love" made the world safe again for that analogy) and are moving on from the Heatley Saga.
GM Steve Tambellini held a media conference call on Friday afternoon and said that he's going to stop pursuing a trade with the Ottawa Senators for the former 50-goal scorer.
The Oilers have been linked to Heatley for about a month. Tambellini indicated that he broke off talks with the Senators earlier this week and is now looking in another direction.
The now-dead deal on the table for Edmonton was rumored to be for forwards Dustin Penner(notes) and Andrew Cogliano(notes) and defenseman Ladislav Smid(notes). All three are no doubt thrilled to have read their names publically bandied about in the most high-profile trade rumor of the summer. OK, maybe Penner was.
More coverage of the Oilers presser from Dan Tencer. So what now for Heatley and the Senators? Take a treasury's-worth of salary back from the San Jose Sharks, one of the few teams Heatley is reportedly willing to skate for next season? Hope for some kind of miraculous reconciliation with the Sens and fans, the likes of which hasn't been seen since the original lineup of Van Halen regrouped for about 30 seconds?
Who knew "no-trade clause" actually meant the complete absence of a trade for all involved?