Most years, Cliff Fletcher tended to ignore the day completely.

“I might have made a couple of deals right at the deadline,” Fletcher said over the phone. “But I can’t remember any.”

The big deals — the ones that Fletcher remembers and is remembered for, like trading Wendel Clark for Mats Sundin or the 10-player trade that brought Doug Gilmour to Toronto or the one that made Lanny McDonald a Flame — were done long before the deadline arrived.

“Let’s go over them,” Fletcher said of the blockbuster trades that defined his Hall of Fame career as a builder. “The Sundin deal was made at the draft. The Gilmour deal (that brought him to Calgary) was made in September. The one to get him back here was on New Year’s Day. Lanny McDonald was in November.

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