Well, it's hardly news now, Visnovsky is an Oiler.
My wife and I listened to the interview he gave, and two things that jumped out at both of us were: 1) the Kings organisation never contacted him, even after his agent and Kevin Lowe had, and 2) he'd only wanted to go to two Canadian teams, and Edmonton wasn't one of them. #2 is the big one. Dan Tencer asked him the hard question: will this be an issue? No, said Vish. Still, I'm sure he will be or is a little bitter, but it doesn't sound like it will get in the way - he said all the right things about playing in Canada in general, and Edmonton in particular. Still, as my wife said, "I'm surprised he admitted that, especially to Edmonton."
Speaking of wives, Vish is engaged, and she's pregnant. "For family it's a better life in LA, and for hockey it's a better life in Edmonton . . . she's ok, she's very strong . . . if I will be happy, she will be happy too." He asserts that he will be happy, but didn't sound totally certain - hopefully a language barrier and not Chris Pronger II.
He was definite about playing right defense as well, and thought that a lot of his problems last year arose from playing LD. I'd thought Souray played RD on the power play at least, with Stoll on the left point, but maybe I'm wrong or maybe Souray can slide over, given that the left is his natural side. Seems weird though, Souray's definitely a left shooter, wrong side for the one-timer.
I can't really speculate any more what this will mean beyond what everybody else has already said - if nothing else, it seems pretty clear that Joni Pitkanen's tenure in Edmonton is over. But most of the speculation seems to be that this means Pitkanen's gone in a trade. I wonder if Lowe is really hoping that he'll sign an RFA sheet and give Lowe a decision to make. Perhaps Lowe would even match then trade him. I don't think Lowetide's speculation that maybe Souray's up for retirement has legs, although I don't think LT does either.
All that said, while I look forward to seeing how the team - and particularly the power play - does with the New Guy On The Block, I'm going to miss Stoll and Greene. You have to give quality to get it, but both players seem like pretty good guys, the sort you wouldn't mind having as a neighbour, and it can't be easy for them. Greene in particular was, I'm sure, pretty popular in the dressing room, and he definitely had some chemistry with fellow college boy Marty Reasoner. Of course, it's not certain that Reasoner will be back, but the Oilers definitely have one more free spot up the middle now.
Update (01 July 2008): David Staples has a bit more on the Vish interviews, this time a "gist of it" translation of Visnovsky talking to the Slovakian media. Yep, Vish was pissed. Hopefully Hemsky can make him feel comfortable, and if the hockey's good, maybe that will be good enough. That's what Visnovsky said, of course, but we'll see.


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