Bryan Murray, shown here lying to Jakub Culek about his chances of making the team. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Ottawa's general manager is traditionally a stand-up guy. He traded Mike Fisher to Nashville, where he could be close to his wife. He traded Antoine Vermette to a place where he'd have the opportunity to be a true second-line player. He's shown a willingness to sign players from the region to help strengthen the team's ties to the community. Hell, he'll even give you a no-trade contract if you ask nicely (or even if you don't).
But sometimes, he does things that just don't sit right with me. Take this quote, from June 5th, for instance:
All right. So far, so good. Daniel Alfredsson has earned the right to pretty much do whatever he wants in the city of Ottawa, as far as I'm concerned. Glad Murray agrees. Besides, usually when you pressure someone into a decision, they either don't do what you'd like because they resent the pressure, or they do it and resent you for pressuring them to do it. Neither are really good outcomes.
But then, not even a month later, we get this comment from him:
I've talked to J.P. Barry, his agent. We just asked that sometime, in the not to distant future, they just come back to us and give us an indication... but he didn't call back today yet, so we'll see what happens.
What happened to "he'll make up his mind when he's comfortable and I'm going to leave it at that"? Bryan, you didn't say that Alfie could make up his mind whenever he wanted as long as it was in the next month. You said you were going to leave him alone! So why are you not leaving him alone? Alfie knows you need a decision. He didn't forget in the month since you last talked.
This probably shouldn't bother me as much as it does. Of course any GM wants to know the status of his players. He's got to plan out a roster for the upcoming season, and uncertainty over holes in that roster probably don't make things easier. But it's July--why does there need to be any pressure for a decision at all right now? Training camp is months away.
More importantly, don't say you're going to leave someone alone if you don't intend to. If Murray had an internal deadline, then he had an obligation to communicate that to Alfredsson when they spoke at the end of the year. Bringing it up a month after the fact, especially publicly, isn't the kind of move that gives me warm, fuzzy feelings.
- The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch speculates the Senators could pursue Anaheim's top right winger Bobby Ryan via trade. He repeats (without citing) Darren Dreger's assertion Ducks GM Bob Murray's asking price for Ryan begins with a second-line center. If that's the case, do the Senators even have enough to be in the hunt? Would they move Turris after what they gave up to get him? Would the Ducks consider Mika Zibanejad ready to take that role full-time? [Sun]
- Speaking of speculation, here's Nichols suggesting the Senators should kick the tires on a trade for Shea Weber if they were willing to give up assets to land a player like Rick Nash. Consider my mind blown. [6th Sens]
- Allen Panzeri puts an end to the conversation of cap floor concerns for Ottawa's upcoming season. To sum it up: They're not going to be under. The end. [Citizen]
- The Senators feature a photo gallery retrospective of... Erik Condra? How could they feature him before they got to Z. Smith? [Sens]
- One of my favorite players, Kaspars Daugavins, has filed for arbitration with the Senators. Peter takes a quick look at what's involved. If Daugavins is awarded a one-way deal, is there even a spot on the team for him? [S7S]
- Over at Welcome to Your Karlsson Years, Varada wonders how long the shine on Steve Yzerman as GM will last if his latest gambles don't work out. If I were a Lightning fan watching Steven Stamkos waste a 60-goal year by not making the playoffs, I'd be wondering the same thing. [WTYKY]
- The Columbus Blue Jackets have agreed to a contract with former Senator Nick Foligno. It's a three-year deal that pays him $9.25M total, with a cap hit of slightly over $3M. So, the Senators wind up paying defenseman Marc Methot almost exactly what they would have paid Foligno. [NHL]
- Seriously, watch this if you haven't seen it. A really cool look at how the playoffs went down. [FastcoDesign]