Robin Brownlee
July 09 2012 01:41PM

Jason Gregor, who has lost his mind and is jumping out of planes with old ladies, is talking about his obsession with sun dresses again (watching them, not wearing them) and, ahem, tennis.

Keener Jonathan Willis is taking time away from writing 17 stories a day to dutifully mock bogus rumor-mongers on the internet (this is a worthwhile pursuit and should be applauded and encouraged).

Jason Strudwick is providing us with the inside dope about life in the NHL – he had a prime seat from the end of the bench and the press box – and talking chips and dip, at least until some NHL team gets smart and offers him a gig as an assistant coach.

Me? Even in my days working the hockey beat with the dailies, this is the time of the off-season, after the Entry Draft and the first week of the free agency season, when I putter around the house doing Family Guy things and bide my time until something ACTUALLY happens, which isn't often. It's slow.

Thank goodness there is some actual news on the way, at least according to Bob Stauffer, the plugged-in host of Oilers Now on 630 CHED. I was doing some quilting work today waiting for the next Willis article, word Gregor had regained his senses or news an astute GM had hired Strudwick when Stauffer tossed out a crumb.


"They are not done," Stauffer said of the Oilers and GM Steve Tambellini, referencing the pursuit of another top-four defenseman. "They are looking for an opportunity to create a mechanism to improve the team via trades and, most likely, for defense in a perfect-case scenario.

"I don’t think for a second that the Oilers are done. I think that the desire would be to add a top-four guy on the back end. Pretty difficult to add a top-two. If you do, you’re going to be taking some significant money back.

"I think they're going to need to capitalize on maybe one of those teams out there that has grown tired of somebody. That's usually how this works. They're going to have to be pretty, you know, they need a lot of stickwithitness going on right now to make this thing happen, but I don't think they're done in terms of improving the defense."

When not inventing new words on the radio, Stauffer is pretty adept at taking the pulse of the Oilers and getting an inside track on what they're doing, or at least trying to do. This much we know. He's not the typical radio rights holder broadcaster in that regard – book off after the draft, make an appearance at a few golf tournaments and take vacation until training camp opens.


Unlike Bikini Girl or the unfortunate stiff (or multiple stiffs) Willis has been strafing with great aplomb, Bombastic Bob has a pretty good record of telegraphing what's up with the Oilers. His tone today in a conversation with co-host Reid Wilkins – a conversation that included the names Keith Yandle and Jay Bouwmeester -- leads me to believe he isn’t guessing.

You can take that for what it's worth. Yandle? Bouwmeester? Who else? And who might have to go the other way? Good questions. What most Oilers fans can agree on, even with all the bodies on the back end, is the pursuit of another bonafide blueliner is a good thing. This, we've already discussed.

Action, as in adding a proven rearguard to the mix, make sense for the Oilers and is good business for a hockey website like this one. Until that happens, pray that Gregor regains his sanity, enjoy the bogus rumor busting and cross your fingers Strudwick gets an NHL job (or the radio show I deserve).

I must get back to quilting now.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.