Brian Burke Was Going To Rent A Barn To Fight Kevin Lowe (Video)
Brain Burke and Kevin Lowe may get along well now, but that wasn’t always the case.
Back in the summer of 2007, the Ducks had just won the franchise’s first Stanley Cup, and forward Dustin Penner was a big part of that, recording 29 goals in the regular season. That seemed to impress Edmonton Oilers General Manager Kevin Lowe, who signed the restricted free-agent to a five-year, $21.25 million offer sheet. With the Ducks unable to match the offer due to salary cap issues, the Oilers came away with Penner, but not without having to endure a barrage of criticism.
Most of that criticism came from Burke, who accused Lowe and the Oilers of grossly overpaying for Penner’s services and inflating the market. Tension between the two GM’s became so high at one point, that they nearly engaged in a barnyard brawl, literally!
Burke described the incident during a recent interview with The Score’s Sophia Jurksztowicz:
My wife overheard me talking to Glen Sather. It got to a point where Kevin challenged me to a fight on a radio interview. So I’m like, “well that’s not really how you challenge a guy to a fight. If you want to challenge a guy to a fight, you pick a place and a time and you show up.”
So I called Glen Sather and I said, “Look, this guy went on the radio and challenged me to a fight.” I said, “I’m going to be at Lake Placid at the US Junior camp.” I gave him three dates. I told him I’d rent a barn and I’d pick the address and time and I’d fight Kevin Lowe…
It got to the point where (NHL Commissioner) Gary Bettman called me and said, “I heard you guys are thinking about having a fight, and if you do I am going to suspend you both indefinitely.” That’s how crazy it got.
As you probably guessed, the fight never took place.
Burke has since mended his relationship with Lowe. He largely attributes that to his son, Brendan, who he says has influenced him to take some of his edge off. Brendan died in a car accident in February 2010 at the age of 21.
Here is Burke discussing his unusual feud with Kevin Lowe.
Hat Tip – [The Score]