Under the B….Luke Richardson

- May 23rd, 2012

No surprise at all that Luke Richardson will be introduced as the head coach of the American Hockey League Binghamton Senators, in a 3 p.m. press conference in Bingo this afternoon.
The job appeared to be his for the taking.
Richardson, a veteran of 20 NHL seasons and an assistant coach in Ottawa for the last three, is a highly respected man. He’s got a strong work ethic and he’s a good communicator. Looking for someone to say something bad about him? You won’t find the person. All he lacks is head coaching experience at the pro level (he has coached girls teams) but that shouldn’t be a roadblock between him and success.
Richardson will do a good job helping the young talent develop, especially the defencemen.
If the Senators are going to fill the job he held in Ottawa – and if they are looking to hire another ex-player for it – I have some suggestions.
1. Jason York, a former Senators defenceman like Luke, does radio, TV and writes a column for the Sun. But he might be interested in the challenge. If so, he’s certainly worth consideration.
2. Shaun Van Allen has coached the defence at Carleton University for the last couple of years. He’s a smart hockey guy and also a good communicator.
3. Todd White, another ex-Senator who has gone into the media, would probably be a good fit as well. I see White getting into the management side of things at some point. but this could be a stepping stone he’d have to consider.

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36 comments

  1. ChokerHater says:

    It would probably be good for the Richardson family as well to get out of this city for a while, as much as I dislike the Chokers, I like and feel for the Richardson’s. Good luck Luke, I hope it all works out for you.
    Could be a tough time to coach this AHL team now that most of the real talent has been pulled up to the NHL.

  2. Bobby Goodman says:

    I am sure Luke is a fantastic individual but I am not sure he is a coach; very simply, he hasn’t paid his dues! It is a situation again where Bryan Murray has extended his employment. He did it before signing him to play defence for the team for two years in spite of the fact that he hardly played the previous two. When he and Smith were getting the reps, the big, young, fast and physical German with the great big shot was sitting in the press box (even though he scored 9 goals in his second year in the league). What could have happened if the brain trust invested in his development?! When it was clear Richardson couldn’t play anymore (he was awful the two years before he arrived) Bryan rewarded the son of one of his best friends with another contract as an extended coach. This of course, was when the General Manager was in old, slow, retread mode. It failed miserably of course but all that needs to be done is trade a few stars away, announce a re-build and miraculously all is forgiven. In fact, you can trade a fan favourite player (Kelly) away to save money for the rebuild and then announce to the media (who support anything and everything) that it is a priority to bring him back even though it will cost more than what he was making!!!!! It makes good sense…to some I guess.

    Kuke Richardson never spent any time behind the bench! Kirk Muller was an Assistant Coach for years and leaves his post in Montreal to coach in the manures to acquire the skills to earn a spot as a head coach in the NHL! Don, it’s embarassing to suggest he coached a girls team but you are not alone, Wilson actually shared that information listeners on the radio today! I do give Richardson credit but Ottawa does things on the skinny and why should it change now. It is common knowledge that the Senators has the smallest team outside the skaters of any other team in the NHL.

    It is a mystery what really happened in Binghampton with Kurt Kleinendorst. Something happened and I suspect we will never really know. Kleinendorst “decided” not to return to Binhampton after thinking about it long and hard! He decided not to return having no contract in hand or offers from another team…strange. It is alwasy easier to find employment when you are working. He had nothing but “good things to say about (general manager) Bryan Murray and the organization, and the same for Binghamton”. It was one of his “nicer stops along the way”. The “people were are wonderful”. The “players that he experienced for two years werewonderful.” So, why did he leave?????

  3. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    No surprise at all Don!
    Luke grew up in Shawville, he won’t rock the boat or threaten Bryan’s job. His other daughter is going to school near there too, convenient.

    How about we hire none of those people Don and hire someone that isn’t a toady to the organization?
    You know, like Paul MacLean who had the audacity to bench the captain and Spezza? Need more of THAT in Ottawa and less echo chambers like York and the rest.

  4. ChokerHater says:

    Luke grew up in Ottawa West…no?

    Bobby Goodman:
    lots of ex players have finished up their careers and went on to be coaches almost right away in the AHL or Junior.
    And you speak of this Wilson dude, is he the embarassing Wilson that works for the Senators but we have to hear him on the sports radio talk shows, who thinks when Chris Neil gets into a fight it’s “good old fashion hockey”
    but whenever anyone, from any other team starts a fight that other player is “nothing but a goon”
    you mean that guy
    hahahahahahahaha

  5. OD99 says:

    Hope it works out but from the education I receive on here I know that coaches don’t really do much anyway so what does it matter?

    Hopefully he gets some good assistant coaches to mentor all the scoring talent we have down there and perhaps some of Luke’s physical style will rub off on the D we have there.

    Me and my pom-pom’s are expecting a pretty nice bounce back season next year if the B-Sens can sign one more vet up front and for the blue line.

  6. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Bobby, Klein left because he called the atmosphere in Bingo poisonous with Filatov making waves, Lehner unhappy and a lack of vets to support the downward spiralling team. Tell the truth ot question Murray in Ottawa and you are done…

  7. Bobby Goodman says:

    Yosemite Sam is a Jerk, Don is absolutely right…and he is a bad coach! I guess his “system” and “strategy” of relying on “Hank” to win games for them game in and game out, couldn’t be counted on. After playing 100 games this year, the fool shortens the bench considerably and leaves players on for extended periods of time to the point of exhaustion. He couldn’t rely on his PP and where were Prust, Richards, Hagelin and Gaborik. This team should be in the Stanley Cup finals against LA but they are not! I am glad but concede, an LA/NY final would be more fun to watch. The NHL brass must be disappointed and certainly Glen Healey! Do ya think? Oh, Yosemite Sam is a classy guy, in his interview aired in front of millions he tells veiwers his team “showed a lot of balls”. Nice! Classy. I don’t think Yosemite has figured out that it may confuse some players to be bitch slapped after one shift and then given a reach around after the next! Sometimes, after the same shift! Oh, but he is entertaining and has earned the respect of many including the bagpipe blowing bellows Healey! It does my heart good to see the team lose. I am not a fan of shows where shouting 4 letter words, anger and hostility is the soul source of the entertainment (Big Break, Yosemite Sam’s ugly English cousin in, believe it or not, a cooking show; bike/car building shows; auction and storage wars…well, every reality show and isn’t sport the only true reality show?). Deboer and his team of Adam Oates (unlike Da Oates-like Costa) and Larry Robinson are very different from the grandstanding garbage of Yosemite Sam. They coach, manage the game/players, the players know where they stand and they have class.

    It is interesting that Gerg Carvel is out of professional hockey. In fact, Murray’s hand-picked bunch that coached the team for three years are all out of professional hockey. The Little General isn’t coaching anywere! The Montreal Canadian’s GM didn’t select a family member to be Assistant GM, he goes with Rick Dudley who before was Director of Player Development for the Maple Leafs (a job reserved for Strength and Conditioning Coaches in Ottawa). I remember when the “Natural Man” made his NHL debut; he was crazy tough. Even as a coach he was scary; I still have visions of him exploding on the bench as Buffalo’s Boss and slamming his head into the galss a multitude of times!!! Yikes!

    I heard that Dudley cannot participate in the upcoming NHL draft as part of the agreement that allowed him to leave the Maple Leafs. It seems to me and my limited understanding but how would anyone police that and how would they know?

    I am picking LA in 6.

  8. Bobby Goodman says:

    Pierre, I know Lehner was a major problem but I didn’t know about Filitov causing Kleinendorst grief. Filly registered 12 points in 15 games and I know he believed he should have been promoted to the big club. Klein blew a gasket at one point and embarrassed the organization but was allowed to finish the year. He should have been dismissed after that but wasn’t. Perhaps you are right and all the kind words about Bingo, the players and Murray was a transparent effort to leave in a positive way (don’t burn bridges).

    I have some concerns about Lehner; is he going to be a problem? Lets be honest here, he was great during the Calder Cup run (he won the championship for Bingo) but has done little since then. He didn’t have a great year this year and to me it looks like he believes he is entitled! It is nice to have Bishop in the event Bishop’s head continues to grow to big for the dressing room and the organization. He is yet another Swede and until Rund’sbad was traded the organization had 7 of them. Frolunda West?

    Isn’t it interesting that none of Murray’s handpicked coaches (Clouston and the 2 mimes) from the last 3 years are coaching in the NHL and one isn’t coaching at all. I wonder if the very “fly” ‘Eli” found work for a professional hockey team (I suspect he didn’t). If you ever saw him in action, you would either snicker or be dumbfounded or both.

    I see the Habs hired Dudley as their A/GM. The GM there didn’t look for talent in the family. Dudley left his role as Director Player Development (no, he was never a strength and conditioning coach) with the Leafs. It is funny to hear one of the conditions of him leaving MLSE was that he not participate in the upcoming draft. Exactly how would Toronto even know if Dudley does offer some input? Dudley, the “Natural Man” is a wee bit intense. I remember when he came into the league. He was a holy terror. It didn’t stop when he became a coach. I can still remember him in Bufalo when things didn’t go his way so he supernova’d and bashed his head against the glass a dozen times! Yikes!

    The NYR lose in 6 games and Yosemite Same goes out in a wimper and the team had the easiest path to the Stanley Cup finals playing against 8th, 7th and 6th placed teams! Perhaps, he isn’t a great coach afterall and all the showboating/grandstanding is a real distraction from that reality. Did he take the pressure off of his players so they could focus on hockey? Did he fail the team and the organization? Most certainly. The PP couldn’t be relied on to score goals. If Lundquist wasn’t unbelievably good, the team lost. Where were Gaborik, Prust, Richards and the stars the last couple of games (the Rangers scored some goals in the 5th game but Brodeur gave them 2). After 100games or so Yosemite Sam went with a very short bench. He left some on to the point of exhaustion. As much as I loved to see him and Sather lose I concede a LA/NYR final would be better.

  9. Bobby Goodman says:

    Oh yes, I will pick LA in 6.

  10. Bobby Goodman says:

    Pierre, I know Lehner was a major problem but I didn’t know about Filitov causing Kleinendorst grief. Filly registered 12 points in 15 games and I know he believed he should have been promoted to the big club. Klein blew a gasket at one point and embarrassed the organization but was allowed to finish the year. He should have been dismissed after that but wasn’t. Perhaps you are right and all the kind words about Bingo, the players and Murray was a transparent effort to leave in a positive way (don’t burn bridges).

    I have some concerns about Lehner; is he going to be a problem? Lets be honest here, he was great during the Calder Cup run (he won the championship for Bingo) but has done little since then. He didn’t have a great year this year and to me it looks like he believes he is entitled! It is nice to have Bishop in the event Bishop’s head continues to grow to big for the dressing room and the organization. He is yet another Swede and until Rund’sbad was traded the organization had 7 of them. Frolunda West?

    Isn’t it interesting that none of Murray’s handpicked coaches (Clouston and the 2 mimes) from the last 3 years are coaching in the NHL and one isn’t coaching at all. I wonder if the very “fly” ‘Eli” found work for a professional hockey team (I suspect he didn’t). If you ever saw him in action, you would either snicker or be dumbfounded or both.

    I see the Habs hired Dudley as their A/GM. The GM there didn’t look for talent in the family. Dudley left his role as Director Player Development (no, he was never a strength and conditioning coach) with the Leafs. It is funny to hear one of the conditions of him leaving MLSE was that he not participate in the upcoming draft. Exactly how would Toronto even know if Dudley does offer some input? Dudley, the “Natural Man” is a wee bit intense. I remember when he came into the league. He was a holy terror. It didn’t stop when he became a coach. I can still remember him in Bufalo when things didn’t go his way so he supernova’d and bashed his head against the glass a dozen times! Yikes!

    The NYR lose in 6 games and Yosemite Same goes out in a wimper and the team had the easiest path to the Stanley Cup finals playing against 8th, 7th and 6th placed teams! Perhaps, he isn’t a great coach afterall and all the showboating/grandstanding is a real distraction from that reality. Did he take the pressure off of his players so they could focus on hockey? Did he fail the team and the organization? Most certainly. The PP couldn’t be relied on to score goals. If Lundquist wasn’t unbelievably good, the team lost. Where were Gaborik, Prust, Richards and the stars the last couple of games (the Rangers scored some goals in the 5th game but Brodeur gave them 2). After 100games or so Yosemite Sam went with a very short bench. He left some on to the point of exhaustion. As much as I loved to see him and Sather lose I concede a LA/NYR final would be better.

  11. Mike8888 says:

    It sounds like Pierre was either playing for Bingo this season, or has a very good information source. Or maybe he’s just guessing.

  12. Bobby Goodman says:

    Hey Mikey……Pierre is Pierre…………………………right?

    I don’t think Pierre is guessing…but then again, aren’t we all just guessing in a way? We are not personally involved and only know what we have heard, read and seen, then, we make assumptions…guesses. If a guy plays for 4 years and in his best year, he scored 4 goals, it would not be a stretch to suggest the now 28 year old will be expected to score more goals. He may…but it is unlikely. And the same can be said of players like Klink; he averaged 12 goals/yr as a professional in the AHL; can we expect more from him in the best league in the world? Should you look at Obrien, and others, the same assumptions/guesses can be made.

    Clouston never won anything at any level as a Coach and his .500 record in the AHL was not worthy of a promotion but, he got it. Cam-moron is the same. Is it merely negativity when someone suggests they would not be successful in the best league in the world?

    We all guess Mikey and it makes for good discussions. I may disagree and vice versa but we should never take it personally. I love the game and contrary to popular opinion, I love having an NHL team here in Ottawa. As a bona fide hockey nut (sports nut really), I cannot/will not support decisions made that do not put the team in the best position to win games. Nor will I endorse players simply because they wear a Senator’s jersey. In my opinion, this organization has gone south since Murray arrived. There have been hordes of old, slow, players that have gone through this organization. The team traded draft choices for them. They promote unskilled (but hard working) players who are borderline professionals and we are supposed to be entertained. I don’t care what anyone says, putting Silfverberg and Stone in the lineup over Petersson or Hoffman was, very simply, very stupid. I want more Canadians on the hockey club, not more Swedes! I want a few French Canadians (as long as they don’t join the protesting students). The team could have gotten Coutourier but decided otherwise. Why? He scored 14 goals in the NHL while Zibby scored 5 in the SEL.

    C’est la vie…mon ami. What is your call on the finals?

  13. Bobby Goodman says:

    Isn’t it interesting/curious that most teams in the NHL hire ex-players for postions on the management team and hockey operations side, but not in Ottawa. The GM, A/GM, Directors for Player Development and Player Personnel never played a game as a pro and no real hockey anywhere! By comparison, Scott Melenby and Larry Carierre, the Montreal Canadiens Directors for Player Development and Player Personnel had distinguished careers in the NHL (their GM also played in the league). In Detroit Jiri Fischer does both jobs and they have Howe and Verbeek. Should you glance at most of the teams in the league you will find names like: Martin Gelinas, Norm McIver, Dave Gagner, Mike Sillinger, Lorne Henning, Mike Ricci, Dave Taylor and Tim (Tool Man) Taylor and you can go on and on. Doesn’t it just make good sense to have people who played the game and played the game in the NHL in these positions? Is it possible that they would be better qualified than someone who didn’t play the game? Is that a possibility? I suspect it must be because most teams in the league have ex-players in these positions. Should you look on HockeyDB.com you wont find any reference to where Tim Murray would have played hockey…but…he is the GM’s nephew. Neither will you find any reference to where Pierre Dorion or Randy Lee and we all know he was a Strength and Conditioning Coach that was promoted to A/Coach on the bench and from there Brian Murray promoted him to Director of Player Personnel. I have often suggested, what bugs me the most are decisions made that don’t put the team in the best position to win games; this certainly contributes to that. I can still remember Dorion gushing over Rund’sbad. I don’t know about you guys and girls, but I don’t think the team under Bryan Murray stacks up, do you? I give him credit for Maclean but from what I have seen he is a players coach and that is it. The other two, much like the Mimes that worked with Clownston, do very little. If you ran a construction company would you hire someone to be Director of Engineering who didn’t have a ring on his pinkie? Whould you hire somoeone to project manage a multimillion dollar project who didn’t possess a PMP? The Montreal Canadiens have assembled a team of ex-plyers who I am confident will make the transition from awful to very good in realtively short order. I strongly suspect they will be in a far better position in 3 years (or less) than what Les Freres Murrays have done here in 5 and in 6 or 7 (if the owner is so inclined). I don’t understand and I am not supposed to, but it does make you wonder.

  14. Mike8888 says:

    Hey Bobby,
    I never take other peoples opinions personally. I think Jersey will win in 6. The Sen’s decision to use Stone and Silferberg didn’t work out but they took a chance. Do you really believe that Petersson or Hoffman would have made a difference? I guess we’ll never know. The Rangers took a chance on a college kid (Kreider) who didn’t play in a regular season game and it worked out.

  15. Bobby Goodman says:

    Kreider is an exceptional talent at 6-3, 215, blinding speed, courage and a big time shot! There was much of risk in that decision, was there? Isn’t it silly to think that a Junior might be better than two who played professional and excelled all year? Stone doesn’t possess a lot of speed either. Silfverberg didn’t even want to stick around to play in the pre-season but Stone and the 18 year old Zibby did. I don’t know if you saw Petersson play but he loves the puck and can do something with it. For a little guy he is very quick, shows a lot of poise and demonstrated he is not afraid of corners! Didn’t the brain trust tell the media that Petersson was going to be the Spaz’s right winger for the next 10 years?

  16. Mike8888 says:

    Yes Bobby. We know. Murray bad., everyone else good. You just assume Montreal with their new personnel will do better than the Sens. Bobby, although I agree you are entitled to your opinion, you often sound like a broken record.

  17. Bobby Goodman says:

    You pick Jersey in 6…interesting. Out of curiosity, why? I think the big, fast, tough, in your face Kings will expose the no-name defence. I also think that Brodeur will have a tough time. It will be interesting but I concede, as the summer roles in to June, my interest level is waining. In my opinion the owners and players should work to out a 70 game schedule and cut salaries commensurate with the number of games. That and going with an olympic size rink would dramatically reduce the number of injuries. The should also eliminate far more that only 14 teams from post season play and have the season finish by the end of April.

  18. ChokerHater says:

    I’ll take the Kings in 6 maybe even 5
    I think NJD’s got off easy on a tired team, played over their heads and will bounce back to earth hard
    The only reason I even say 6 is it might take the Kings a bit to get their legs back from all the waiting.
    And then making them wait till today to start the finals is dumb. It’s not the Kings fault the last series took so long, the Kings should have got the advantage of a short layoff but instead they have to sit and wait even longer
    Should be short and sweet
    Then we can get on with summer baseball, oh that’s right, you don’t have a major league team in Ottawa anymore
    Ok football, oops hahaha no football either
    OK OK then maybe we can all go down to Petrie Island and swim with the floating turds LOL

  19. Bobby Goodman says:

    Mikey, I suspect you are right, I am a broken record. Is Murray bad, I will let you be the judge. After 5 coaches in his 5 years and even more Assistants, are you left inspired and confident? After 5 years, the team is in rebuild mode and why do you think that is happening? Did you have confidence Clouston and his assistants were going to be successfu? I certainly wasn’t. Do you think Cam-moron with his record, deserves to be in the NHL and isn’t it conspicuous he coached Eugene’s junior club? What are the odds of that happening? Do you think he will be successfu? I don’t. Just like Murray didn’t really come to Ottawa to coach, Richardson didn’t come to Ottawa just to play. The son of Murray’s best friend was destined to do things after his playing career was over (which really happened two years before he came to Ottawa and play an additional two years). Tim Murray and Randy Lee are great examples of others who have benefitted from Murray’s generousity.

    Will Montreal be successful, I can only assume Mikey. But, there are critical and uncritical assumptions. It is my guess the Habs are in a stronger postion to be successful with the people they have on board than Ottawa. I could be wrong but I suspect NHlers know what it takes to be successful far more than others who didn’t play any the game at any real level. I couldn’t select the best Nuclear Scientist but, I know a dumbass when I see one! In Bergevin, Dudley and Mellenby, right from the get go Montreal is better. Look at the teams that are playing for the Prize right now and see who they have on board. LA have Emerson, Hextall, Robitaile, Stevens, O’Donnel, Sutter…NHLers all. New Jersey have Deboer, Robinson, Oates, Thurmen, Caron, Laperriere, Scot Stevens.

    It is interesting to not that when LA’s GM was first made a GM he asked Lou Lamouriello what his advice might be and he replied: “I don’t have any advice to anyone other than surround yourself with the best possible people you can get. And try to get people that might know more than you. Hire them, don’t be insecure. Respect it and don’t allow yourself to get caught up (that) it’s you. It’s the people around you.” Great advice don’t you think Mikey? Who in the Ottawa organization do you think might know more than Murray? Do you think he would ever hire an ex-General Manager? I would suggest he never, ever would.

    If this franchise is to reall rebuild, it needs to start from the top! There, I said it again.

  20. Bobby Goodman says:

    I neglected to include Larry Carierre as a member of the Habs management team. Another ex-NHL player.

  21. OD99 says:

    The Kings made the playoffs with a few games to spare this year and haven’t sniffed the Conference finals since ’93. I think that picking up Carter and Richards, drafting Kopitar, Brown & Doughty plus the maturation of Quick have more to do with it than anything else – unless all those NHL players on the management team just got smart when the playoffs started?

    The Devils finished out of the play-offs and below the Leafs last year (yet still ahead of the Sens even though they got to pick before us!! How good would Larsson look on the Sens roster right now?) so did they just get smart in the offseason?

    At the same time you praise those organizations you deride Murray for having Luke Richardson – a tough,hard nosed D who played in the NHL for many years – with the club? Once again, your rules though and your opinion.

    Media talk about a rebuild but the reality is that despite trading away Fisher and Kelly the wheels were in motion to change the team well before that – ever since Murray took over as GM. He changed the way the club viewed drafting and added a ton more scouts because he believes to have success you have to cultivate your own talent.

    I know you won’t provide him any credit for this but snagging Karlsson at #15 was a steal, getting Z. Smith in the 3rd round was a very good pick, nabbing Mark Stone in the 6th round was robbery (potentially), drafting Petersson and Silfverberg “could” be very good moves. All of those players and then some were picked before this “rebuild” – same with him acquiring Anderson. The impact that trading Kelly and Fisher will have on the franchise won’t be seen for a few years and that is only if Noessen and the rest of the guys picked up with the draft picks we received turn into players.

    Getting Bishop for a 2nd round pick seems like a steal and has the Senators in a position of potentially having 3 above average goalies in the organization….with Lehner being a potential franchise guy for years to come. While most of it has to be projected out and I am sure you will comment as such, why would the Sens future be any grimmer than the Habs, who don’t have nearly the same prospects as the Senators?

    I fully admit that Murray has had his challenges with picking up pro players and the coaching hasn’t worked out as planned but he has and is doing a TON of good things for this team but you can’t bring yourself to admit even one positive. Your second favourite player, Z. Smith was picked up as an over-ager in the draft and rather than be happy about it you complain that he didn’t get into the league fast enough or that he isn’t being paid as much as player x…all negative all the time.

  22. Dennis_w says:

    If NHLers always make better coaches, it stands to reason that the best NHLer (Gretzky) must’ve been the best coach. And of course that non-player (Bowman) lucked into all those cups.

    As far as managers go, Milbury was a half-decent player whereas Sam Pollock couldn’t play a lick.

    As usual, instead of making blanket black/white statements, it might be better to judge each case on its own merits. But that’s harder. The other way makes hockey (and the world in general) easier to understand if not always accurately.

  23. Bobby Goodman says:

    Not every player would make a good coach and how good a player was has no bearing what so ever (certainly Dennis you know that). Gretzky was God awful as a Coach. Milbury was, arguably, the worst General Manager ever! Pollock was GM for the Habs organization when it was easy. Still, I suggest someone who possesses the requisite mangerial skills and played the game is far better equipped to be a GM, A/GM, Dir Player Dev/Personnel etc. Indeed Richardson was a hard nosed defencemen, but Coach? He came here to play after sitting for most the previous 2 years and was well past his prime. I suspect his post playing days were already mapped out for him. I never believed Clouston and the Mimes were going to be successful (but many hear did). I will never supported promoting a strength and conditioning coach to A/Coach and then again to Director Player Personnel. I am sure you guys do and that’s fine…I don’t, that is all. I don’t have any respect for Cam-moron as a hockey mind! I found Eli commical. Tim Murray is blessed his Uncle introduced a career in the NHL to him.

    To suggest Murray has been successful after 5 years here is confusint to me…but, everyone is allowed to have their opinion. If going from young fast talented entertaining and Stanley Cup contenders to old, slow, boring and then to young slow and boring is success, indeed Murray has been successful. Bingo was the worst in a 30 team league and what do you think they will do next year? Will Silfverberg, Zibby, Petersson, Noeson, Peumpal Stone and company be difference makers with either club? We will have to wait and see.

    How will the Sens do next year? I will suggest it will very difficult for them to have the same success they enjoyed this year. They may be without Kuba, Gonchar and Carkner. Gilroy is awful. They will have more rookies. Can Maclean rely on his goaltender as he had in 2011-12? Will Karlie post the same numbers? Philips will be another year older, slower, softer. Afredsson may be gone and there is a thing called contingency/succession planning.

    But, the team may have Kelly back and if he is, it will cost more. Lehner may be a problem; I think his ego is righting checks his talent/results can’t cash. Based on what I read, he is a malcontent and disruptive. With all those additional scouts, the team uncovered gems like Butler, Rundblad and Da Costa. They didn’t live up to the hype, did they.

    The bottom line is results. The team squeaked into the post season and were bounced in the first round (most of us predicted that but some didn’t). Should the team not make the post season next year, will Murray still be a dandy GM? Or, is he given 2-3 more years? After 5 or 6 years, shouldn’t we fans expect better results (if they don’t come)? 6 years should be ample time effect change, unless of course you introduce the notion that the organization is in a rebuild. Then you buy yourself what 2-3 more years? How much time do you guys give him?

  24. OD99 says:

    Tell me Bobby who are all the young stars that Murray let slip away?

    Which players were supposed to step in and create some competition in camp?

    As for Bingo yes they were last in 2011/2012 but they also won the championship the previous season and many of the players on that team played in the NHL this season – why do you only pick one part of the whole?

    One more year of understanding how to play together, plus a decent off season for many of the young players who played a ton of games the previous year, plus Turris being in training camp plus potentially some bigger, more physical D to go with potentially a more proven top 6 forward has me thinking the Sens could easily duplicate last seasons success.

    Will Spezza have the same season he did? Career year so hard to say, isn’t it?

    This thing called contingency and succession planning is exactly what Murray has been building since the cupboards were BARE when he took over the team. Muckler didn’t sign Chara, Muckler let Havlat walk for nothing, Muckler showed no respect to his players (and contributed to Chara walking) by banboozling Hossa. Muckler didn’t draft any players of note while he was here (Condra, Greening and Foligno aren’t much to show for his entire tenure) and Muckler traded away a whole bunch of draft picks for guys that did nothing for us at the trade deadline.

    I think you believe Murray should have been able to come in, pick up any player he wanted (preferably alll young, big, fast and with great skill and heart) to stock the farm team with and the NHL club – it doesn’t work that way.

    There is basically nothing out there to suggest that Lehner is a trouble maker or has an attitude problem but you pick up on a portion of a story and turn it into whatever you want, that is your prerogative.

    As for Butler, DaCosta and any other College free agent the point is that they didn’t cost the Sens anything – no draft picks and no warm bodies. If they don’t turn out or they only turn into serviceable AHL players that is fine – no harm no foul. But I know…if only we didn’t have those guys then Petersson would have scored 40 goals this year and Hoffman would have been rookie of the year. Worst case is that both of those players received more seasoning in a men’s league – particularly Petersson so he could get used this style of play and the dimensions of the ice surfact.

    Rundblad is nowhere near the player he is going to be – he is 21 and has played 30 NHL games yet you write him off? That is fine although I can’t imagine you ever being able to put a team together…deciding a kids future based on a handful of games is not a good way to have your team grow.

    And I understand where you are coming from, you want the team to win – I just don’t think you have the patience to allow the franchise to grow into a consistent contender again. You can be as smug as you want about the Sens loss but it was by one goal in a 7 game series. And yes, Murray will…

  25. OD99 says:

    still be helping the Sens if they don’t make the play-offs. Again, look at the Devils – finished near the bottom of the league two years ago with all of their wonderful management team so obviously they were terrible and should have all been let go. Now this year they are in the Finals so they much be the brightest bunch around…yeesh.

    It is by far much easier to be negative about everything regarding a team and it’s players because it is extremely hard to win and it is extremely hard to make the NHL. You think you are wise but the percentages will always be in your favour when you trash everything about a pro team. No doubt many of the picks won’t pan out and no doubt the team will have it’s troubles because there happens to be 29 other teams attempting to get better, sign the top free agents, etc…but yes, you will be right because you just cast a net and say “they all suck” – if a few make it then no big deal, you can always fall back on the ones that didn’t with grim satisfaction.

    If the Sens had won the Cup this year you still would have a laundry list of things that aren’t right and still dislike Karlsson’s game and still dislike Murray’s ways, etc…whatever makes you happy though.

  26. BGoody says:

    I like to be entertained Dave and this version of the Sens do not entertain me. I do not share your optimism with the crop that lace it up every night. Lets forget about Karlie…I have had enough of him (and Swedes for that matter) but let me ask you this, what are your expectations next year? If the Sens are worse next year is it then safe to suggest it is Murray’s fault. What are your expectations for the the next 3 years?

    As for Lehner, I am only naking an observation based on what I have read. I certainly am not an authority on any topic and only share my opinion.

  27. Daniel Murphy says:

    I would like to know where we stand on the “Rebuid”. Have we finished rebuilding? If so, do we really think we can go all the way with the current roster? If the rebuild is on-going, what is the next stage or phase? Do we keep all the old geezers around? If so, why? I personally don’t think there is any majestical plan being followed. What do all the intelligent bloggers think? What is the next move of consequence for the Sens? Personally, I would dangle Anderson out there to see what he might get you. Lehner is the Dryden of the future and Bishop looks like a winner so do we really need Anderson?

  28. Dennis_w says:

    Daniel,

    This is just my view.  Management has often said that this was a 3-year rebuild (starting last year), at the end of which they should be challenging for a playoff spot.  But something “went awry” and the team made the playoffs in the first year.

    Although a pleasant surprise, this, I’m sure, surprised everyone, including management. I’m guessing that they were planning on a top-5 pick this year and maybe next year. This is how (in my opinion) a core can be changed in the cap era (through the draft).

    If they get rid of the “geezers”, I’m sure they will finish as a lottery team next year, since I don’t think the young guys are ready yet. Now, I’m okay with that because I believDaniel,

    This is just my view.  Management has often said that this was a 3-year rebuild (starting last year), at the end of which they should be challenging for a playoff spot.  But something “went awry” and the team made the playoffs in the first year.

    Although a pleasant surprise, this, I’m sure, surprised everyone, including management. I’m guessing that they were planning on a top-5 pick this year and maybe next year. This is how (in my opinion) a core can be changed in the cap era (through the draft).

    If they get rid of the “geezers”, I’m sure they will finish as a lottery team next year, since I don’t think the young guys are ready yet. Now, I’m okay with that because I believe you need high picks for a proper rebuild. But, as usual, I’m not sure we have the fanbase to support it.

    Considering last year’s success, management might decide the rebuild is over (after getting a 6th overall pick) and that it’s now time to compete. I wouldn’t agree with this short-sited approach, but it would appease a segment of the fanbase and the media (Bruce has already set the bar for next season at making the playoffs).

    Even if they go with the “this is a playoff team” approach, my guess there’s a good chance Ottawa will miss the playoffs next year due to league parity. The danger is that they might not be bad enough to get a high pick.

    Personally, I would stick with the longterm plan and possibly miss the playoffs next year by going with youth. But I’m not the one paying the bills.

     e you need high picks for a proper rebuild. But, as usual, I’m not sure we have the fanbase to support it.

    Considering last year’s success, management might decide the rebuild is over (after getting a 6th overall pick) and that it’s now time to compete. I wouldn’t agree with this short-sighted approach, but it would appease a segment of the fanbase and the media (Bruce has already set the bar for next season at making the playoffs).

    Even if they go with the “this is a playoff team” approach, my guess there’s a good chance Ottawa will miss the playoffs next year due to league parity. The danger is that they might not be bad enough to get a high pick.

    Personally, I would stick with the longterm plan and possibly miss the playoffs next year by going with youth. But…

  29. Kevin F. says:

    I suspect the status of the great rebuild will be clarified after the finals. The Murrays will gather their house organists from the Team, the Sun and Sportsnet and lay out exactly how they want it put forth
    Near as I can tell the rebuild has consisted of trading a mid twenties goalie for a 30 ish tender, trading two useful role players, one of whom was vastly overpaid, for draft picks and one totally useless malcontent for a late pick.
    The skaters were replaced by a variety of younger cheaper role players with varying degrees of skill and promise.
    During last season a player who was being touted, exactly one year ago, in these parts as second coming of Bobby Orr and Erik Karlsson rolled together was dispatched with a fairly high pick for a center who was a very highi pick but had yet to establish himself as a NHLer
    The key to the rebuild it seems to me, is that despite a series of relatively minor changes (no core stars, proven prospects dealt)you hard sell the term rebuild, with the help of the media outlets you seem to hold a great deal of influence with. Not only that despite many nights dressing up to 9 players of 30+ years ( not to mention that 3 of 5 top D are 34 or older) you manage to keep up the mirage that this is a young team. NHL stats say the Sens are firmly in the middle of average age among the 30 teams. The Sens are about half really young and about half really old.
    After a season where almost everything went right, the litmus test for the epic rebuild will be the coming season.

  30. BGoody says:

    The Murrays have succeeded, we have fans willing to give Bryan Murray and his nephew 7 years at the helm…to make the playoffs. The team got a post season birth by phenominal goaltending. The youth, are awful. The team is among the league leaders in shots allowed and goals scored against! Many on the club are very soft. As Kevin points out, this team is not so young. Who hear believe Condra, Dog, Wince, Klink, Obrien, Gilroy, Butler, Kuba, Philips, Gonchar, Carkner, Konopka represent the future. I would like to ask where everyone thinks the team will finish next year. Is it acceptable if they miss the post season. I will suggest they do not make the playoffs for the simple reason thereare too many on the team who are not NHLers and they will have more newcomers next year. Kuba is gone so who will back up the Offenseman. Where will the 27 gaols that God scored come from should he retire. Who will get the 6 that Butler scored and who will get the 2, 3 or 4 that Daisey the Air Rifle scored. Gonchar and Philips are not getting faster and tougher and Carkners knees are suspect (his mobility is lacking). I will say they will finish 10th and to me, that is not good for being in the GMs chair for 6 years!

  31. OD99 says:

    Rebuild is just a term,albeit one that almost all organizations use at some point – or for many, many years. To some it means getting rid of all older players and to others it means changing the structure of the team. Personally I think the Senators are somewhere in the middle as they wanted to get some high draft picks but they still had a veteran presence to mentor and guide.

    The real point is that the Senators are at a point where they need changes made to become a more competitive team. Some of these changes have already occurred, most notably in the goal crease. The Senators went from having a glaring weakness to having a solid veteran (so far one of the best goalies Ottawa has every had) plus to very coveted prospects. Huge change to me and makes the rest of the changes much easier to manage as we all know that having above average goaltending is the key to success in the NHL.

    Now the focus must be on the blue line. There is one star there already, poised to be a superstar if he can repeat his offensive production and keep improving his defensive play and then there is Cowen – could be a very, very good, physical D or could just end up being a big body with a long reach and a little toughness. Either way I think he will be a valuable piece of the puzzle. After that there isn’t much – Borocop, Gryba and Wier all get talked about but they haven’t shown they will be impact players in the NHL. At this stage I don’t know they need to be though – if Boro or Gryba can play in the NHL, hit people and not get caught out of position all the time then I think they could be upgrades to what we already have. Add a Dman through a trade or via FA and next season the Senators could easily be more defensively sound and harder to play against. It wouldn’t take much.

    As far as the forwards go they still need more firepower and explosiveness and I think they will determine the type of season the Senators have in 2012.

    That said, Murray has made some moves and Turris is a good start but he has to mature physically and he needs to be more consistent in point production. Silfverberg, Petersson, Stone, etc…all seem to have some skills that could translate into NHL success and if one of them can play on the top line then things look dramatically better as guys slot into positions more suited to their skills. Having Greening, Z.Smith and Neil on the 3rd line is pretty good…we have more than enough bottom 6 forwards and I think the Senators will again have some good players down there.

    Regin is interesting – if he can show he can play on the top 6 then it gets even more crowded and perhaps Smith become a 4th line guy – same with Foligno, can he get to 50 or so points again or more if given consistent 2nd line minutes?

    In terms of age – I can play the other side of the coin and say that 3 players skew the numbers: Alfie, Gonch and Kuba – most of the Sens future is based on the young players on the team . Plus goalies don’t count.

  32. Dennis_w says:

    Bobby,

    Phenominal goaltending? At the start of the season you were parroting “the voice of reason” and calling him a sieve. You were also saying that the team would not make the playoffs a few days before they did. You’re always negative about the team (except Spezza), but backtrack for the reasons why.

    There’s a very good chance that the team doesn’t make the playoffs next year because of parity and them not being an elite team in the second year of a rebuild.

    OD,

    Cowen looks like he’ll be a top 4 D, which means he’s at least playing in the league, which is better than Parjarvi.

  33. BGoody says:

    Dennis, am I wrong about the goaltending. Should I say that the goaltending was horrendous. The team was one of the worst for allowing shots. I dont parrot anyone and if I share someones opinion, I will say so. Sorry. I think you confuse negativity with candor. If you expect me to celebrate Gonchar, Philips, Butler, Da Costa, Rundblad, Kuba, Gilroy (who will not be back I hear), Klink, Obrien, Condra, Winchester (who will be resigned I hear…thats exciting), Dogauvins, Konopka, I wont…they do not entertain nor do they represent a rebuild. I love the way Spezza plays but he is not the only one; I have often said I like him, Smith, Neil, Michalek, Turris, Alfredsson, Carkner. I have suggested Greening could be good if he used his speed but the puck is a boat anchor to him. I also want to see him more physical and often said he would be a good 3rd or 4th line guy. I like him with Smith and Neil (I love that line). I think the goaltending is great for the next 5 years if not longer and the team has trade bait if necessary. I have always liked Peter Regin and he being healthy can only help the team. What backtracking might you be referring to Dennis. If I am wrong, I will say I am wrong…this is a place to express an opinion and none of us are absolute authorities.

    If it is negative to say that Zibby only scored 5 goals in a league that Rundblad and Silfverberg dominated, then I am sorry but his 5 goals do not give me warm fuzzies. If complaining about Butler occupying a spot on the team for 60 games is negative, again, I am guilty but the team now say they will buy him out…are they negative. If asking why Da Costa got 20 games to prove he did not belong was wrong, I am sorry but I would have loved to have seen what Petersson could have done for more than just one single game. Was I just being negative about Gilroy Dennis. If saying I was disappointed that Silfverberg left for home and was not willing to test his game in the preseason against NHLers, then I am guilty and negative.

    I would have prefered the team not make the post season for couple of reasons; it validates what Murray is doing and it depries the team of a higher draft pick (not good if the team is in a rebuild and was going to get bounced out in the first round anyway…which I and many others predicted).

    Cowen is very big and in my opinion needs to be far more physical. He also has to be quicker. But, he is young and we will see. It may be a stretch to suggest he will be a top 4 guy. He may, but I dont think so.

    You suggest parity is the reason the team may not make the playoffs next year Dennis. If the team is one of only 14 that dont play on after the post season while 16 others do, it will be because the team is bad…afterall, Bryan Murray has been here rebuiding for 6 years and next year will be his 7th. I think you are very negative to suggest they wont make the playoffs but you are very optimistic in your support of the Murrays. Good for you.

  34. Dennis_w says:

    Bobby,
    It’s always the same with you: putting words into people’s mouths, and everything is either black or white. IMO, the rebuild started last year when they traded players (good ones) for picks. It can only be judged when last year’s picks can be evaluated (and not just by you when they’re 18, having never played an NHL game). Prior to that, management was trying to “go for the cup”, in Melnyk’s words, by trying to paper over holes in the lineup through bad free agent signings of over-the-hill players. You can call that a rebuild if you like.
    Is it possible that I’ve disliked some things that Murray has done and liked others? To me it is, but to you it isn’t.
    You are definitely wrong about the goaltending. Is it possible that Anderson is neither a sieve nor phenomenal? Not in your black and white world. He was both in the same season. This is the same mindset that let’s you make snap judgments about 18 year-olds, and just about everything else. And like Cherry, you always bring up the very few times you’re right (like saying the sens would get bounced in the first round).
    The goaltending illogic goes hand-in-hand with opinions like people should only be hired on merit, but players should be Canadian and coaches and management should be ex-players.
    In any case, like I’ve said before, I don’t need to share your views in order for them to have merit. I just wish there was more logic to them and they were based on correct facts. I especially don’t like it when you and your buddies delve into rumour-monguering to back up your views. But I’ll leave that to others.
     

  35. Bobby Goodman says:

    What ever Dennis. I am negative and you are positive…great! I don’t make snap judgements; I try to base my evaluation of someone on performance. What 18 year old have I trashed? I bring up the times only when I am right? You could be right but I don’t think so. Have I dwelled on the predicted shelf life of Richardson, Smith, Lapointe, Robitaille, Stillman, Cullen, Sutton, Commodore, Mr. Duff, Kovalev, Gonchar, Kuba? Do I continue suggesting it was wrong to hire Eli, Paddock, Hartsburg, Clouston and the Mimes? Do I continue mentioning Da Costa, Butler, Rundblad were not great decisions (indeed the team finally acknowledged he was not good enough and that is why he was traded). If suggesting that Spezza and Michalek need a right winger was wrong, check out the networks, they all agree. When God and Turris were struggling, I wanted someone with skill to join them and hated Klink with them…oh, they started to fly when they put some talent on the left side! All year I wanted Neil and Smith together and wanted The Android with them! I wanted Carkner in the lineup. I wanted Butler and Da Costa demoted. I thought it insane to put Silfverberg and the 19 year old Stone in the series vs the Rangers when there were professionals who earned the priviledge! I was not the only one who thought it was silly, many in the media were baffled as well.

    I don’t know what business you are in Dennis but I would suspect if you were going hire a manager, you would want him or her to have experience in the industry. That isn’t a novel thought; should you go around the NHL you will see a pattern of ex NHLers occupying places within their management positions. But, not in Ottawa. Ottawa has a GM, AGM, Director Player Personnel, Director Player Development who never played a single game in the NHL…why do you think that is Dennis? The 3 years previous they also had coaches (Clouston and the Mimes) who never played a single game in the NHL. That may inspire you but not me.

    Rebuilding, to me, means making an investment today that will benefit the team down the road. You suggest the rebuild started last year. Rundblad, Da Costa, Butler are not the future on this hockey club. We have no idea what Silfverberg, Zibby (who is being shopped around), Noesen and Peumpal will do or if they will ever make the NHL! Obrien, Klink, Dog, Winchester (now 29) aren’t even NHLers. Condra is a borderline NHLer. Gilroy isn’t an NHLer and now Ottawa agrees with the two other teams he played for. So what gives you all the confidence that the Sens are in good hands?

    I appreciate you are a fan, that is great, but I must have have missed the things the Murrays have done that you disagree with. Are you fearful you will be branded as negative?

  36. OD99 says:

    Hey Bobby,

    Your take on NHLers in management positions is somewhat accurate but there are those who didn’t play that have had success as well.

    As for answering your question about dwelling on so many things, I have to believe you are joking? Of course you have dwelled on them! You dwell on old things all the time, that is the BobbyG way and the person we have come to know on this site.

    As for DaCosta, Butler and the other younger players there are some on here with your mind set who make a decision on a player fairly early and then there are people like me who have no problem waiting a few years to see how a player will develop. One thing I will say again is it is much easier to claim nobody will make it since such a small fraction are capable of playing in the NHL so your percentage will be higher than mine ever will.

    A rebuild is always a crap shoot and until an organization builds up players to either make the team or be worthwhile trading chips it can’t be done. Murray to me has done a good job of at least grabbing assets and having pieces in place to potentially get this team on the right track. Time will tell if Stone, Zibby, SilfverSurfer et al will have an impact but I like the entire Sens organization now much better than when Murray took over and the cupboards were bare with nobody at all to call up from the minors save for Josh Hennesey (God, I still can’t believe that is all Muckler was able to get back for Havlat).

    Karlsson, the reigning Norris trophy winner was a steal – Z. Smith seems like a very good signing for a 3rd rounder as do many of the other picks Murray’s scouting team have helped with…when Muckler was here and the first few years or Murray taking over as GM there was nobody coming up that you could even pretend to be excited about. Now the Sens have, by all accounts, one of the best and deepest prospect pools in the league and from, if talent is evaluated properly, the Senators can begin the climb back to perennial contender.

    Murray has done some dumb things – many of his trades involving pro players back have not been good and several of his FA signings haven’t worked out that well but as far as Richardson, Smith, etc…I don’t think they had a huge impact since they were bit players on the team. One thing I am afraid of is that Murray trades some of our young players and gets back more pro’s that wont’ fit or do well here…I really want him to hold the course and see what the young guys he drafted can do first.

    I am not sold that Nash would be a good fit here for the cash…he isn’t a sniper that Spezza would gel with since Nash likes to have the puck and drive the net. He doesn’t have a one-timer that I am aware of and scores from in-close. If anything he would be better off with Turris but how do you put him on the 2nd line?

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