I’ve read a ton of sports books over the years and one main theme is common with regard to traded players: the first cut is the deepest. Once a player in any sport has been dealt by the team that drafted and developed him it becomes no big deal. It’s a business.
But the first one that sends you down the line means saying goodbye to some long term bonds and that group of young people who joined the rank and file at the same time. That’s your group, your brethren.
Cogliano is in a unique situation: he was traded and then not traded, kind of a pro sports near death experience that could have been a massive negative if he was a less mature or impressive individual.
Few if any could claim surprise at the maturity of his words today when addressing the situation:
- “It’s disappointing. I like being here. I want to be an Oiler.”
- “I’m not holding any grudges.”
- “It just made me strong and it’s good motivation too.”
- “I’m a guy who has some worth in the league and I have to prove it now.”
I don’t know if I’m more impressed with him or his parents; either way, what a tremendous young man and here’s hoping the Edmonton Oilers do what all strong organizations to with exceptional young men. Wait to see what they are until trading them away.
What is Andrew Cogliano? An NHL regular with two full seasons at age 22 and he’s just getting started. It’s comforting to know he’ll be an Oiler for the foreseeable future and my guess is he’ll have a strong season in 2009-10. The guy’s a winner.