Loose Change: A great sign

The following is purely fictional and meant for entertainment purposes only. By entertainment, we mean we hope you laugh while reading this, while framing this, or while burning this. Any similarities between this and actual events is strictly coincidental and frankly, dumb luck. Remember to remind your lawyer about the made-up part, OK?

Sheldon Souray is the new Premier of Alberta. He’s now the King of Edmonton. He’s Superman meets the Three Musketeers. He’s Magellan and Neil Armstrong with a side order of Jesus.

Anyone who’s been following the trials of the Edmonton Oilers over – I don’t know – the last 15 years, knows they’ve gone from the most successful hockey franchise of the ‘80s to diving for quarters in shark-infested waters for the sheer entertainment of ogling tourists.

Edmonton used to be a prime destination for anyone with hockey talent or a strong desire to win something not involving a lottery. Then the lean years of the ‘90s hit. Lean, in both on-ice success and financial security. To put it into perspective, standing next to the physical depiction of the Oilers’ franchise, Kate Moss looks morbidly obese.

The team fought to stay afloat much like a bowling ball would. The Oilers became that prom date nobody wanted. Blessed with the most rabid, resourceful, loyal, thick-headed and stubborn fans in the world of sports, the Oilers survived a long and arduous series of financial transplants. After the NHLPA imploded Herr Bettman re-arranged the financial playing field, Edmonton stood poised to once again regain professional and financial street cred. Only thing is, it’s Edmonton. While the pro athlete could marvel at the celebrity in Los Angeles; the gang violence in Philadelphia and the lack of any discernible direction to anything in Toronto, what would he find appealing in Edmonton? OK, nice refinery, but other than that?

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The capital of Alberta had virtually no attractive charms to woo potential players to the city or at least keep them from hypothetically running off to the better shopping available in cities like Milan, Paris or – I don’t know – Anaheim. If large animals were cool, Edmonton was a gerbil.

Then along comes (gallantly rides in) one Sheldon Souray, a hulking and talented defenseman, from the mean streets of Montreal with an impressive resume and an old wedding album complete with the occasional un-retouched photo of a supermodel. He’s good looking and, unlike most recent Oiler signings of late, is not described as “the poor man’s version of” anyone. He has personally put Edmonton back on the hockey map faster than you can say Balsillie.

Thing is, he thought he had signed with Calgary.

Charlie Teljeur, creator of THN’s hockeysockpuppettheatre, brings you Loose Change every Tuesday and Friday only on

Want to talk to Charlie about love, life, or Loose Change? Email him at