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Onrait: Things seen and heard during TSN's Free Agent Frenzy

Jay Onrait
7/1/2010 6:13:22 PM
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TSN's resident wit Jay Onrait weighs in with his unique observations on the wheelings and dealings from Thursday's Free Agent Frenzy coverage.

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Gord Miller says a GM told him: "All the teams with cash have no space, all the teams with space have no cash." Exception to that rule:  The Toronto Maple Leafs.

Instead of Pierre McGuire standing uncomfortably close to Darren Dutchyshen, we have Pierre standing uncomfortably close to Gino Reda. We like to keep our viewers guessing.

Darren Dreger breaks the Gonchar signing: three years at $5.5 million per plus a no-trade clause. "He would have taken less to stay in Pittsburgh," says Dreger.

Gino Reda: "This panel is giving you the opportunity to hear the term ‘brain fart' on television..."

Pierre on the Tanguay signing in Calgary: "This is a move that smacks of desperation to tell you the truth" (little did he know what was coming).

Four years $20 million for DARKO MILICIC? Who is running the Minnesota Timberwolves... Glen Sather? Sorry got caught up in the NBA Free Agent Frenzy for a sec...

James Duthie after Tampa annouced the Marty St. Louis contract extension via Twitter: "With Twitter I always take everything with a couple grains of salt." Exception to the rule: Anything tweeted by Eklund.

James Duthie as the Queen pulls up to Parliament Hill in a horse-drawn carriage: "This is almost an exact duplicate of Keith Jones arriving in the TSN studio this morning."

Gord Miller: "Pretty bad when you have to beg for airtime on a 5-hour show isn't it?"

Pierre McGuire running around the studio again. We need to get him a train like the one Rick Stratton's dad had on ‘Silver Spoons.'

 British-born Gino Reda is celebrating his first Canada Day as a Canadian citizen.  Appropriate that the Queen is in Canada on the same day we celebrate England's greatest export to our country.

Darren Pang: "He's big, he's bald, he's Alex Auld."  Duthie: "There's your billboard for the Canadiens next year."

Duthie after Colby Armstrong told him he was having breakfast with his family: "I won't ask you what you had for breakfast, but that IS the kind of question you will get in Toronto."

Pierre abruptly gets up in the middle of a panel. No one keeps Pierre in one place! NO ONE.

Matthew Barnaby on Colby Armstrong: "A Character guy that can play? That's better than a character guy that CAN'T play. I was a character guy that couldn't play."

Jack Armstrong making an appearance on Free Agent Frenzy day to talk about the NBA Free Agent Frenzy. No one has smiled this much on TSN since Steve Tambellini on our Draft Lottery Special.

John Lu translates Darren Pang's now legendary, "He's Big, He's Bald, He's Alex Auld" slogan to French: "...il est grand, il est chauve, il est Alex Auld..."  John admits it doesn't quite have the same ring to it en francais.

Derek Boogaard to the Rangers at 4-years $1.65 million per? That's Darko money!

Derek Boogaard signs a 4-year deal with the Rangers that may be "north of $6 million dollars total," according to Gord Miller. Duthie: "We need a Pierre McGuire ISO camera right now after he heard those numbers." I'm guessing he wasn't smiling like Jack Armstrong.

Joey Crabb 2nd highest trending Twitter topic. Surely a sign of the apocalypse.

NOBODY CHIRPS SCOTT NIEDERMAYER!

Darren Pang on Derek Boogard, who has scored 2 goals in the last five years: "He's struggled on the offensive side of it." Keith Jones: "But Gaborik set him up for the 2 goals he scored in 05/06, that's why they're back together."

Longtime NY Post hockey writer Larry Brooks on the Derek Boogaard signing: "Boogaard/Rangers=Finger/Maple Leafs. Or worse. Inexplicable. Rangers would be best served by having 0 cap space available on 7/1." In other words, he's all for it.

THE story of the day: The Flames are bringing back Olli Jokinen.

Darren Dreger: "3 to 3.5 million dollars per year to bring Olli Jokinen back.

Bob: "I'm speechless. That's unbelievable."

Duthie: "Negotiations on a Joel Otto deal continue."

Pierre McGuire: "He'd be better."

Michael Farber: "Clearly the Flames do not believe the evidence of their eyes."

Steve Simmons: "If Sutter signs Olli Jokinen he should be fired tomorrow."

Barnaby: "Great character guy."

RDS is now saying Hamhuis to Vancouver is done. At $4.5 million per year for 6 years he takes less than what other teams are offering. "It was Vancouver all the way," says Pierre.

Darren Pang is on fire temporarily replacing the tweeting James Duthie as NHL on TSN host. Pang: "Keith Jones is wearing the same black jacket he's worn every single day for several years."

Kurtis Foster seems like a really nice person.

The entire studio is completely speechless with the confirmation that Jokinen has signed for 2-years in Calgary for $6 million. Even Pierre can only muster: "This is bizarro world."

After Andrew Ladd to Atlanta trade is announced on the show, Gord Miller says, "That is at least 7 players from the Stanley Cup Champions that won't be back." Bob McKenzie: "A lot of the players on the Hawks feel that they might have become an easy team to play against." Pierre McGuire: "You talk about how Vancouver can get over ‘the Chicago hump,' they just did it thanks to the salary cap."

Darren Dreger says working the Jokinen story today was among the most bizarre experiences of his career, and he was working when Glen Sather signed Wade Redden to a 6-year deal worth $6.5 million per.

Buffalo signs Jordan Leopold to a 3-year-deal. Duthie reports that Darren Pang's response was: "They must have out-done the Calgary Flames."

James Duthie to Darren Pang after learning Johan Hedberg got a NTC as a backup in New Jersey "You played 20 years too early pal."




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