In Ottawa, one automatically thinks that this is another article about those men and women Stephen Harper appointed to the upper chamber of our Parliament. No, on another wintery day in February 2019, just after the NHL trading deadline, this is a loyal hockey fan`s lament about being led down a path, then finally realizing he has been fooled by a trail of lies from Pierre Dorion and Eugene Melnyk over last two the years.
When Melnyk purchased the Ottawa Senators and the Corel Centre on August 26, 2003, the hockey fans in the city rejoiced with great HOPE and renewed COMMITMENT. While many incorrect statements have been made by the team`s management over the years, I will only highlight a few from the recent time to demonstrate the evaporation of this HOPE and COMMITMENT.
When Pierre Dorion took over for Bryan Murray as the 8th team General Manager in April 2016, he said: "The No. 1 priority is definitely to get back to our winning ways," "There are many positives with this team. We have a great nucleus of players and I really think through Bryan’s work, we’re on the right path on getting to the Cup." "For us not making the playoffs was simply unacceptable. I wasn't hired here to bring the team to the playoffs, but to succeed in the playoffs."
In October 2018, he stated that "Hopefully, our next discussion on Matt Duchene is when we can hopefully announce a contract."
Dorion said in a quote posted to the team's official Twitter feed in 2018, ‘We're happy to have Mark under contract," "Mark is a great leader in every sense; a character person, passionate competitor and a talented two-way player. "Signing him is the first step in a process that allows us to continue to negotiate a long-term deal in the new year."
September 13, 2018, he stated that "This is the right moment for us to rebuild our team, and shape our future with a faster, younger and more competitive team on the ice. We are going to build a culture of consistency which will allow this team to sustain better performance over the long term."
A team may be weak at evaluating and drafting players, poor at coaching a winning team or mediocre at engaging its fan base, but they should NEVER lie to them over and over again, insulting knowledgeable fan’s intelligence, eroding what little loyalty and patience remaining. Many wondered if Ottawa had hit rock bottom when management dropped the bomb and asked Eric Karlsson for his list of 12 no trade teams in December 2017. After his trade and the trades of Duchene and Stone, we realized that the Senators have not yet hit rock bottom. Despite more lies from management’s prepared media lines, we know this is just the beginning of the collapse.
"That’s part of the rebuild. We feel when those players (Chabot, Tkachuk) are in their prime we’re going to be a contending Cup team," Dorion said at a late afternoon news conference at the Canadian Tire Centre. "All of these players are going to be part of this rebuild. "What’s encouraging is all of these players are going to be in the prime of their careers and we have no intentions of moving any of them. They are going to be here. I don’t know what else to tell you.
Dorion on February 28, 2019 accentuated that "Guy is our coach. I don’t think anyone will disagree with me on this one that I’ve probably made his job pretty difficult the last few weeks, and we’re going to support him." Four days later ……. we all know what happened next.
No one believes anything that comes out of your mouths anymore, Mr. Dorion and Mr. Melnyk. We don't get fooled again!’
"I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again
Don't get fooled again, no no"…..The Who
A former hardcore fan
P.S. Let us start a campaign to reserve Ottawa Senators season tickets when Dorion and Melnyk are no longer around. I believe the support will be overwhelming!