A lot of talk

- January 4th, 2011

There are plenty of interesting rumours making the rounds with the Senators floundering.
Of course, colleague Steve Simmons had an interesting take on the whole situation in his blog Monday. There are different versions of that story going around. One thing is certain, GM Bryan Murray doesn’t want to go back behind the bench but he may have no choice if he wants to make a coaching change.
Hard for Murray to hire anybody if he doesn’t have a contract for next year.
You have to wonder what’s going to happen here in Ottawa. People are up in arms. The sky is falling. They lost to the Maple Leafs 5-1 and by Monday there was supposed to be major changes.
Nothing materialized. Eugene Melnyk hasn’t been heard from and he won’t be heard from for the foreseeable future. Really, what is there to say? He tried that with: “Fasten your seatbelts …”
So, what next?
If you believe the rumour mill Canadian coach Dave Cameron is going to take off his gold medal, go to his office with the Mississauga St. Mike’s Majors, pack up his stuff and take over for Cory Clouston.
That’s the word out of the Team Canada dressing room. Sure it makes sense. Why not? Cameron is always been a good soldier for Melnyk. Has worked in his stable for years. Cameron had a short stop in Binghamton. His team is tabbed to win the Memorial Cup it is going to host this spring.
A league executive noted this morning we have heard this stuff before.
“When the world juniors were in Ottawa weren’t Bob Nicholson and Pat Quinn supposed to be taking over then?,” the executive asked. “This always comes up around world junior time. So Cameron is going to make sense.”
Melnyk wouldn’t want to disrupt Cameron right now. They want to win a championship. Don’t rule out Murray behind the bench … again.

Categories: Hockey

Subscribe to the post

28 comments

  1. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Murray is best behind the bench.

    See? I didn’t rand about him.

    Please no Cameron. It’s clear the players are taking advantage of CLouston’s inexperience in the NHL.
    Team needs someone that’s been around the block and won’t be afraid of rubbing egos the wrong way.

    Agreed on Melnyk, he’s a lot smarter than me so not saying anything…best thing right now.

  2. ChokerHater says:

    How about Pat Quinn with Tie Domi as an assistant LOL

  3. Nancy D says:

    I think the only thing we can do right now is stand pat til the end of the season. No sense bringing in another coach or picking up any players at the trade deadline. That said, if we could be sellers of any of the deadwood on the team for prospects or picks, as long as we don’t get fleeced in the deal, I’d go for it.

    When a bad storm hits, all you can do is bunker down and try to ride it out til it passes.

  4. tuna99 says:

    the last thing this team needs is more Murray, he has been the worst GM in the history of this franchise and has left a huge anchor for his sucessor will incur, the contracts of Gonchar, Kuba and such. Remeber when he took over last time and he said ,there may not be enough time to turn thi aorund, can you imgine a coach ever saying this, especially after how Clouston came in and turned this team aorund. That Murray statement was the classic statement of a man who was given way to much rope and who was to comfortable, he lost his passion and his drive to win.

    The real disaster in all this is the men that have made this franchise, Fisher, Phillips and Alfie are being run out of town and weàll be left with Gonchar, Kuba and Kovalev to watc. This is a travesty as far as I am concenred and Murray deserves an old charlie brown reeming for this.

    Murray has lost his touch, evidence is the free agnets and Leclaire trade, Commodore and his coach hirings, jasn smit. he.s to old and has to many interests going on, like his nephew. We need a man who is focused on one thing only and that is building a cup contender, not building a playoff team. The focus of this franchise changed the day Murray took over and I knew this wehn he gave his ,anything can happen in the playoffs, specch. This is true, but I,m not stupid enough to beleive ththat,s how you win, we in Ottawa know how hard it is to win, we,ve been close and failed, time to get somebody in who understands the same thing.

  5. ChokerHater says:

    Worse than Muckler, come on
    And I thought when Murray was behind the bench he did an OK job, so if Melynk could talk Murray to go behind the bench for the rest of the year, that solves two big problems. It’s pretty obvious that they are both going to be gone at the end of this year when their contracts expire, so they have two choices, get Clouston out of here, Murray behind the bench and wait for a very disappointing year to end, then hire a new GM who could hire his own coach, or keep Clouston and ride out the year. There is no way a new coach will be hire because you would need to sign him for 2.5 years and then the new GM’s hands would be tied.
    Nope live with what you have, but I seriously believe that Murray would be better behind the bench that Clouston
    Either way, it’s looking like you’ll be lucky enough to get a lottery pick this summer

  6. Visitor - Pierre says:

    I don’t know if Murray is the worst, but certainly he has been the most embarrassing since Bridgman and the most frustrating since Gauthier/Bridgman for sure.

  7. tuna99 says:

    what,s ottawa.s obsession with Muckler, it,s been years, get over it. comparing him to Murray and saying Murray is better is total stupidity. Just look at the record and the intregrity of the on ice product, enough said on that, arue all you want ut the book is now in, Muckler was, is and always will be a better GM then Murray in Ottawa. Sure he bumrushed the press, but Muckler at least put a winning product on the ice and sold it to the fans and it reflected in sellouts for years, which is the GM,s number 1 job.

  8. Nancy D says:

    Murray and Muckler were both terrible. It’s like asking if it’s worse to die by fire or drowinng…..both options suck.

    Muckler’s task was to build a championship contender in a hurry. He almost succeeded in his goal, but he killed the long-term viability of the team to do it.

    I have no idea what Murray’s mandate was, but whatever it was, it failed. Our prospect pool isn’t nearly as good as some think. Lehner has taken a big step back, Cowen looks like he just be a typical #4 defender, the rest of the farmhands are AHLers. Karlsson is the only hone run……provided he’s paired with a tank who will cover the back end.

  9. kinburnsen says:

    It’s suicidal letting Murray to continue managing this team. His signings have been terrible and have destroyed this franchise for next season as well. We need an interim GM to see what contracts can be moved at the trade deadline, however I doubt we’ll be rid of Gonchar or Kuba. The hunt for a new permanent GM should start now and be in place for the draft at which time a new coach will be in place too. And for gawdsakes fire Carvel-how does he continue to survive the purges?? Clouston will learn from this and be back in the NHL after a few years.

  10. Jay says:

    Sounds like Sens fans are slowly coming around to a bit of a rebuild. I’m sure the next thing will be super high expectations of what they should get in return come the trade deadline (same as the Leaf fans always seem to do). Realistically, they will probably only move Campoli, Ruutu, and maybe Kovalev. If you look at the recent history of moves, Campoli might net the famous “2nd round pick” (similar return to the Wisnewski deal, minus the 5th rd pick), and given the MTL-ANA trade, it appears as though the market for an “Agitator” aka Ruutu will be somewhere around a 5th round pick. If Kovalev gets moved it’s to one of two of his former teams NYR or PIT and the return will be minimal, probably not even a draft pick, maybe a lower level AHL player.

    Phillips would probably net a decent pick or prospect, but don’t hold your breath on him waiving his NTC. Like Bruce, I can’t imagine the Sens making him a long term contract offer. He seems like a good guy, but the Sens are at their quota for over-priced “good guy” deals (Neil & Fisher). Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and move on and make way for new “good guys”.

  11. PaV says:

    I am still calling this team to make the playoffs….. ;-)

  12. ChokerHater says:

    Disillusioned PaV :(

    I know your kidding

    now they need to avoid the Toronto mistake of
    going on a rip every year just after they miss the payoffs
    stay low draft high, maybe get the next Dany Heatly :)
    dump as much cap at the trade deadline, bring up your
    AHL guys and get them some experience

  13. Mike8888 says:

    Pav,
    I agree that they still have a chance to make the playoffs, but they need to start putting together a few 4 or 5 game win streaks, the chances of which, aren’t looking to good right now. Garry Galley said on the Team 1200 yesterday that “Kovalev looks like he’s totally quit on the coach”. If that’s the case, the Sens should send him home for a few games. It can’t hurt the team too much.

  14. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    We’re not making the playoffs, it’s not mathematically possible.

    Put it this way. The Senators have as much chance of making the playoffs as I do of stepping outside and having a ménage-à-trois with Lady Gaga and Christina Hendricks from Mad Men, that is slim to none, though Gaga is here in March and stranger things have happened.

    They would need the following to happen:

    5-7 game-winning streaks, consistently, with no more than one or two game stretches of losses.
    Teams above them, including Montreal Canadiens, Atlanta Thrashers et al. all losing 5-6 games in a row and not winning more than 3-4 games each in those stretches.

    Yeah, not happening. Even with the Habs floundering lately they’re still in 8th, 8 points ahead.
    It’s time to clean out the vets. Inform Fisher, Phillips they can be traded or they can be bought out.
    Ask Alfredsson if he wants to be part of the rebuild or whether he wants to finish his career with a contender.
    Same with Neil and Kelly.

    Young guys, inform them that change is coming, things will be tough but brighter years are ahead.

    Melnyk, Murray: Sell a rebuild here. There is no hope for the present but there is hope for the future.
    Mr. Murray: Stop looking for your #1 goalie, he’s at the World Juniors. Go with Lehner/Elliott in 2011.

    Have a good week and good luck to the team in Chicago and back against Tampa, they’ll need it.

  15. BGoody says:

    I think there are more than Kovalev who dislikes Clouston. There is no reason for Spezza and Ruutu to respect him. I am sure Smith doesn’t like him. Lee and Kuba shouldn’t have any respect for him. Anyone who makes an effort every shift every game has to have an issue with Clouston for allowing Kovlev to coast the last two years with impunity! I don’t want my team to make the playoffs this year. It will only serve to validate Murray and Clouston’s employ here. This team should have held on to draft picks and not give them away for tired old loaners; now they need to earn and accumulate the high draft picks. Going to the post season will accomplish nothing; do we then suggest the team is good? This team could go to the seond round of the playoffs and they would still be a very bad team with no future. It is time to accept this reality and make plans for the next 1-3-5 years.

  16. Mike8888 says:

    Bobby,
    I hope it doesn’t take that long. Look what Holmgren did with the Flyers in such a short time.

  17. OD99 says:

    Ahh…nice to be back and read all the thoughful posts.

    Also nice to see that Pav is still an inscrutible optimist! I am afraid I can’t share that opinion at this stage though…this team is showing its age, it’s general lack of a scoring touch and appears to be showing an attitude of defeatism.

    That said I will still cheer for the team and hope they either have a good turn around (doubtful – can’t stop the puck and can’t score) or sink badly, get something for Philips, Kovalev, LeClaire (? never know if a team wants a different back-up) at the trade deadline so that we have some draft picks stocked up and ready to use for trade bait or for actual prospects. If we can get a prospect or even 4-5 additional draft picks for those guys I think that would be great and would allow a “rebuild” while still keeping some core players.

    I think the Sens can resign Philips for a much lower salary with a longish term contract and I have no problem with him being in our top 4 – maybe I am a softie but his dedication and good character are a plus for this team and our shared community.

    Tuna your rose coloured glasses regarding Muckler must be driven by the fact that he took over a deep and talented team and somehow you attribute that to him? A few key points:

    Muckler traded Salo for Schaefer (I liked Schaefer but even with injuries Salo is a much better player…and still in the NHL)
    Traded Laich and a 2nd rounder for Bondra (brutal and Bondra was a FA after his short time here)
    Traded Havlat and Smolinski for Hennessy, Preissing, Barinka (sickening for such a talent as Havlat)
    Signed Gerber (apparently Murray liked him too though)
    Signed Hasek (who knows how things might have been if he wasn’t such a head case)
    Signed Redden over Chara

    Of his 47 draft picks only Foligno, Lee, Bass, Meszaros, Regin, Eaves, Elliott went on to play in the NHL and only Foligno, Mez, Eaves , Regin and Elliott have steady jobs.

    Some notable first rounders include
    Klepis – 2002 (16th) Who?
    Lee – 2005 (9th) **We got the 9th pick instead of a mid 20th due to the lottery they held after the lock-out and Muckler went completely off the board for a kid that should have gone late in the draft rather than take Stall or Kopitar to name a few – he even had the nerve to say he was rolling the dice on a “project player” because the Sens had enough talent**

    Murray, in 20 picks so far has Karlsson and Z. Smith playing in the NHL with Lehner, Cowen, Weircoch and a handful of other decent prospects already in the mix – not to mention Bobby Butler who has had a pretty good start to his pro career and was a FA signing out of college.

    Anyway – I guess I still ramble…

    GO SENS!!!

    DON’T FIRE THE COACH – IT WOULDN’T SOLVE ANYTHING!!

  18. PaV says:

    Mike, Bobby, Nancy, Choke, VIS, and all, this is coming from a die hard SENS fan… the team will be a very, very, very, VERY long shot for making the post season.

    Not unless
    - We start scoring
    - Someone lights a fire under Kovi – either get rid of him or bench him
    - We have D that can shut down top lines
    - We have a goal tender that can stop a puck and who is not a china doll
    - We have some guys that can score
    - Start playing like a team
    - Bench players that need to be benched.
    - And last.. but not least… a coach that can get his guys going.

    I have been a massive CC fan since day one, but each time our team gets their collective a$$es handed to them I lose more and more confidence in him. Can he turn it around? Can he get the team going? Doesn’t seem like it. Murray behind the bench? Give me a break. The season is coming closer to the end…. if we make a run at the post season, we will need to fill massive, massive, MASSIVE holes which have come to the forefront in the last 3-5 games.

    I have said it time and time again, I rather see our team leave it out on the ice and lose, than lose the way they lost vs TO. I was ashamed watching that game. It was an AHL team at best.. and TO even had a AHL(i think?) goalie in nets and we couldn’t even get more than one goal. He wasn’t even tested.. it was pathetic.

  19. Brent E says:

    Murray doesn’t need to go behind the bench. The problem is the talent level of the team, not the coach. Leave Clouston alone.

    And Murray doesn’t have to go either. He has done a fine job of restocking the prospect cupboard after it was badly depleted by Muckler. He got the best he could out of the Heatley mess, which was not his fault. The only issue I have is his UFA signings. He seems to be a better prospect evaluator than a pro evaluator. If he can learn that, and pass off that reponsibility to somone else, then he will be fine.

    Fact is the long term outlook for the franchise is solid. Murray just has to ease off the big retirement contracts so we can keep our cap flexibility.

  20. Mike8888 says:

    I agree Pav. I remember watching the Sen’s in their first few years and although they lacked talent, you could see that they were giving 100 % effort on every shift. I don’t see that from this team other than maybe once in a while. (the Pittsburgh game for example)

  21. PaV says:

    Mike, I miss those days. I hate beating up on my team, but I hate seeing them lose in such a fashion more. There is a story posted on the Ottawa Sun’s sports page saying that Murray won’t give CC a vote of confidence…. thats exactly what CC needs now…. well done.. well done Murray

  22. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Karlsson is here because Alfie’s Swedish and they share a birth city. If his name was Eric Carleton Murray would not have drafted him. Smith is decent. Others in the mix? We’ll see. The bar has been set at a Cup finals. IF Murray’s kids win two games in a Cup finals I’ll come around. Otherwise, all the prospects in the world don’t amount to a hill of beans.

    Look at the Caps, tons of prospects but no ability to get it done in the post-season. Yes, yes, Ovechkin is a world-class player but he’s already started to fade. Too much is made about the cupboard being bare. It’s an excuse. Teams don’t bring up 10-12 young guys from the farm every year. You hope one or two people make it down the road.
    Complaining about Havlat? He wasn’t progressing…Preissing was decent for us What is Havlat doing in Minny? Nada. Redden was beloved by EVERYONE here. That was a well-liked move but Redden spiralled. Chara needed to be a captain and that was NOT going to happen in Ottawa. It was a bad move. Hasek was a GOOD MOVE. For the first time EVER, the team played with confidence and swagger knowing it had a world-class goalie. Sure he got injured at the Olympics but that happens! What about Hossa for Heatley? That put us over the top! Bondra trade wasn’t bad. He was supposed to be a scorer for us but he turned out to be a doormat.

    Muckler wasn’t amazing, by any means, but there wasn’t the non-stop circus around the team there has been with Murray. That’s the bottom line with me. We sacrificed too much to make Murray employed and who knows when we’ll be as classy and even close to a contender. Yes, I know about the salary cap, etc. misnamaged by Murray again. Too much love for grinders, older players, etc.

    Look, Murray isn’t the devil. He doesn’t go out at night, stealing candy from babies and chicken wings from Don Brennan. He is a good guy but he’s been overcome by events here. He’s made very bad signings and has gone for a quick fix where it has not been necessary. I put some of that blame on Melnyk though.

    Bah. Go Sens Go.

  23. Mike8888 says:

    I wonder if we can trade Foligno’s with Buffalo.

  24. Tom Tillyt says:

    Good to see how the class act Bryan Murray is calling more press conferences to start a rumour mill churning about his coach. He’s more of a soap opera director than a GM. No wonder he’ll retire without a cup. Why did the Sens even hire this guy?

    Oh right, Shawville…

  25. tuna99 says:

    Oh yeah, things ar eheating up, lot’s of ego’s getting up in each others faces, nothing like watching a once proud and model franchise completly collapse and implode on itself.

    This is the curse of wade Redden coming back to haunt Murray, he should of never of forced the issue in trying to trade #6 and gone public to force Redden out, then again he shouldn’t have done it to Spezza either.

    I made it clear I;m not a Murray fan, but watching his press conference he only has himself to blame. He didn;t step up and take responsibility, he hung the coach out to dry and gave the old “we all need to do better” speech…but unless we are back int he playoffs by the end of next week Clouston is fired and then you’ll all see the real Gonchar, Kuba, Kovalev and Leclaire.

    We cheer for the laundry I know, but seeing Fish and Phillips maybe being offered up and in theri place are Kovalev, kuba and Gonchar, that is a disgrace Murray should be thrown in the canal for, that is just completely useless management in every way.

    These are dark days, but ti could be alot lot worse on deadline day with the way Murray trades and brings in money on this team….

    The reason he didn’t sign Donovan is because we would of been the oldest team in the league. Don’t tell me right now Donovan wouldn’t be our best forward and punch Kovalev in the face just for being a douch bag.

  26. Mike8888 says:

    I agree Tuna. At least Donovan hit, skated hard and played with heart. Phillips wants to stay. If he gives the Sen’s a bit of a home team discount, they should sign him. As per the article in today’s Sun, he can help stabalize all of the Sen’s young defencemen that will be here in the next few years.

  27. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    No, no, no.

    Do not sign Phillips. He’s part of the Kanata Boys Club that has become comfortable with just showing up, losing, then punching out. This is management’s chance to change the culture and rampant sense of entitlement in this dressing room.

    Let Phillips go, let Fisher go. You want to stabilize the young D? That will happen in time. Our young D will make mistakes and learn from said mistakes. Heck, this team should have pretty much a new look next season and I’m counting Kuba and those guys among the departed.

    I know what you’re saying…you can’t make large-scale changes like that, especially in a market like Ottawa!
    Take a look at Philly, they did it. I’m sure other teams have as well. There is a big, big problem on this team and it starts with a core that knows it can play the spoiled child and the GM will just fire the teacher.

    That has to stop, no matter who we need to sacrifice.

  28. I would hate to be a coach in the NHL. The minute things turn for the worse, he ends up taking the fall. What about these so called “Athletes” that are getting millions to do something they supposedly love? As an avid Sens fan, I am really tired of the same excuses day in and day out of why they can’t score or win games. It’s the players,plain and simple. I don’t know if there is a virus in the dressing room or what is causing them to perform at this level, but enough is enough. Leave the coach alone, he has proven he could turn the team around when they were at their lowest. The difference now is the players don’t feel like listening anymore. Well I say “Suck it up”, be a man, and go out and play hockey. We need youth!

    Annie

Leave a comment

 characters available