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Dorion Speaks: MacArthur, Ryan, Adding a Depth Forward

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Senators general manager Pierre Dorion joined TSN 1200’s In the Box to talk an array of different topics yesterday.

NHL: Ottawa Senators Press Conference
Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Senators GM Pierre Dorion joined Steve Lloyd and Todd White on TSN 1200’s In the Box yesterday. You can find the full audio here.

On roster moves today:

“Methot, we’re hopeful for tomorrow. Freddy Claesson has injured his hip and has been placed on IR. Because we’re hopeful for Marc to play tomorrow, we’ve called up Andreas Englund. Also another player transaction today, we’ve sent Max McCormick back and we’ve called up Buddy Robinson for tomorrow night’s game.”

On Andreas Englund’s call-up:

“All the time, Randy Lee always talks with Kurt (Kleinendorst) on a daily basis and with Randy gone to Sweden and Finland the past nine, ten days, Kurt and I have discussed quite regularly and he’s expressed to us concerning Andreas, that ‘Andreas has been our steadiest and probably best defenseman.’ Being a lefthand shot, not knowing what Marc is going to do tomorrow, probably makes it easier to call up a lefthanded shot defenseman, but at the same time, I’ve always believed that it’s on merit and it might be a bit sooner than we wanted to with Englund, calling him up, but if you deserve it, you should be here. And we’re not sure he’s going to play, because if Marc plays, we’re going to go with our six regular guys, but if he doesn’t then Andreas will get his first NHL game.”

On Buddy Robinson’s call-up:

“Thought process is that, in talking to Kurt over the last few days, Buddy has been our best forward. Steve Stirling has said that it’s the best hockey he’s been playing. Losing Bobby, who’s a right winger, and probably moving Curtis back to the fourth line with Chris Kelly and Chris Neil is the indication Guy gave me. It just felt like we needed to give Buddy another shot here. And both my philosophy, Rand Lee’s philosophy and Bryan Murray’s philosophy in the past, Daniel Alfredsson’s philosophy is we reward whoever we feel, or the coaches in Binghamton, is playing the best. And at this point in time with Buddy’s speed, his size, the possibility of us going on the West Coast playing bigger teams, might not be the worst thing to do.”

On Bobby Ryan’s situation:

“Bobby went on the IR following the game on Tuesday against Buffalo. We’re going to decide in the next few days if he’s coming on the trip. His first availability would be against San Jose in San Jose. Initially on Wednesday we were fearing for something worse, but yesterday we got some good news and there’s a chance he accompanies us on the trip. I’d put that at 50/50, so if he accompanies us on the trip, there’s a pretty good chance he’ll play. I’ve got to give Bobby a lot of credit. People don’t know how many injuries he’s played through here. Getting his hand frozen and playing with pain. I just made an executive decision, and we’re not going to go through what we’ve gone through in the past few years with Bobby; we’re going to let him heal up, make sure he’s close to 100 percent so he can give us the best hockey and at that point in time, he’ll be back in our lineup.”

On how active he’s been with other GM’s, looking for a forward:

“Very.”

On how close he is to finding a deal:

“You’re never close. You think you’re close and then the next call you make you find out you weren’t that close. I’ve worked the phones quite a bit in the last three days. It’s been three very active days. (We’ve) gotten off to a good start. I’m very happy with where we are right now, but I don’t want us to fall back in the standings. So it’s up to me, it’s on my shoulders to make sure that this path continues, putting it on our coaches and our players, also.”

On what type of player he’s looking for:

“We’re looking at depth guys. Bigger fish aren’t really available at this point and time of the year. Those deals are, most of the time, made in the offseason. Whether it’s a forward of defenseman, I’m always looking to improve.”

On making a trade:

“I think as an organization, we’re not afraid to give up picks. I won’t call on blue chip prospects - we won’t be trading Colin White, Logan Brown, Thomas Chabot. Those guys are pretty much un-tradable. Unless we get a huge piece on the side, but other guys can be moved so we can see some improvement right now. Arguably, we have one of the most dynamic players in the game and the best defenseman in the game, no matter what anyone tries to tell me. And we have a piece we have to build upon. I think our goaltending speaks for itself this year. It’s spoken for itself the last few years. We have to make sure that we give our best chance - I’m not talking about Stanley Cup - but to get us into the playoffs. That’s what we have to do as an organization.”

On having Erik Karlsson in his prime:

“When you have one of the best players in the league in his prime, you have to put pieces around him. Now, it’s always easier said than done. I’ve said on multiple times I’ll play Playstation 4 with my son, he makes trades and he builds great teams. It’s not quite like that in the NHL. It’s just about adding. We’re never going to add a Sidney Crosby to our lineup, but adding pieces that can help us win, whether it’s to move Mike Condon or along those lines, I think it’s our responsibility to do so.”

On Guy Boucher is the coach he thought he would be:

“Without a doubt. I’ll go on the record - of all things I’ve done as general manager, hiring Guy Boucher and this staff with Marc Crawford, Marty Raymond, Rob Cookson, Pierre Groulx and Kris Young, it’s the best thing I’ve done. Hands down. It’s exactly what we - (Boucher) said that ‘Pierre, in the start we’re going to be defensive, we might be boring, I’ll open it up after’ - I think after six weeks he said we’ll start seeing improvement and I’ve seen that. I think I’ll start opening it up more offensively as the season goes on, but still keeping the same defensive structure. Our penalty kill is I think tenth now. Our power play has been much better, though it has had its struggles early on. But it’s exactly what I envisioned with Guy.”

On Clarke MacArthur:

“I think Clarke is making progress. Again, this is a very boring answer, but the doctors will decide at the end of the day. Clarke wants to play, we want him to play. He’s been around the team. I think there’s a chance he comes California trip, again if I’m off on this, I apologize, we talked about this. He’s getting closer, there’s progress that’s been made. He will play this year. 100 percent. Not 99. He will play. So that’s another guy back in our lineup that we know that can help us.”

On signing some of the team’s pending free agents:

“History sometimes predicates what’s going to happen in the future. We’ve only lost Erik Condra to free agency. And you know the Erik Condra story. The agent came to me and said ‘we’d like two years.’ We offered two. Then he turned around and said ‘we got three somewhere else.’ And I said ‘best of luck to Erik Condra.’ So everyone else we’ve signed. Right? Let’s not panic.”