25 Years Ago Today


TORONTO (Aug. 9) – Chances are you’ve been inundated with recollection of 25 years ago today, when Edmonton Oilers traded Wayne Gretzky to Los Angeles Kings.

Pardon me for coming in late.

Just a quick story: The trade occurred as I was settling nicely into my third month at CJCL AM-1430 (later The FAN-590). I’m dating myself terribly by recalling our Canadian Press ticker – a contraption that looked like a computer printer and spit out reams of newsprint. Whenever C-P sent out a story of note, our machine would emit a solitary ring. If the story was of particular importance, a second ring would occur. Once in a blue moon, three rings accompanied a breaking story of international prominence (such as the December 1988 Pam American Airlines disaster over Lockerbie, Scotland).

When the freaking bell wouldn’t stop ringing early in the afternoon of Aug. 9, 1988, we in the news-room made a bee-line for the printer and nearly collided like the Three Stooges.

The only subsequent time I heard such a commotion from the C-P ticker occurred less than two months later, when word broke from Seoul that Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson would be stripped of the 100-meter gold medal he had won two days earlier at the 1988 Summer Olympics.

Here, newspaper images from 25 years ago today… and a few other Gretzky “moments.” Enjoy.





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