Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Melnyk Spun Two Ways

Eugene Melnyk was quoted widely in the press today as saying that the Senators are "at a crossroads".

Nothing earth shattering about that. But what is strange is that different news outlets are spinning his words in both positive and negative ways.

The Ottawa Citizen, in a small piece written by James Gordon (who also writes the Hockey Capital blog) interprets Melnyk's statement as one that doesn't give a vote of confidence to Bryan Murray and Craig Hartsburg.

In this context, Melnyk's words are somewhat ominous:

"Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk hinted Wednesday that jobs will be on the line if his team doesn’t start winning down the stretch.

Asked if he would give a vote of confidence to general manager Bryan Murray and head coach Craig Hartsburg in Ottawa Wednesday, Melnyk instead voiced his expectations.

“As far as I‘m concerned, right now, we are at a crossroads,” he said. “This is it. We have to win 26-27 games (to make the postseason) and it’s got to be done, and if it’s not done, well, we’ll have to deal with it."

That makes it sound like Geno is issuing an ultimatum for Murray and Hartsburg.

Then you go over to and that same statement is conveyed in a much more positive way.

"This has not been the season we had all hoped to have," Melnyk stated. "We had great high expectations but it's not over 'til it's over.

"I still continue to believe in our players, our organization and our staff. You can mark my words - things are going to get better."

Melnyk said he would continue to leave hockey decisions in the hands of the hockey people as the Senators continue to pursue a winning formula - unless the losing continues.

"As far as I'm concerned right now we are at a crossroads," Melnyk said. "This is it. We have to win 26-27 games. It's got to be done and if it's not done, well, we will have to deal with it."

Put in this context, Melnyk seems to be giving at least a slight vote of confidence to his staff and his players and that last sentence doesn't seem so threatening.

I think that what both TSN and the Citizen make clear is that Melnyk won't hesitate to make changes if the dismal performances continue, but the Citizen article seems to imply that changes could be just around the corner, rather than later.

So which one is right?


Anonymous said...

My interpretation is that he is going let them, Murray and Hartsy, try and make the playoffs, and if they don't, there will be consequences.

In other words, their jobs are safe until they are officially out of the playoffs.

Andrew said...

What a jackass. If he's going to "continue to leave hockey decisions in the hands of hockey people" what the hell is doing shooting off his mouth in the media every friggen week? Can someone tell Jerry Jones over here to shut his mouth?

Canucnik said...

Eugene should just be quiet and leave town, even "more" quietly. I am sure he is distracted by the (Good for one use only!) Soccer Pitch (not our problem) and is not truley aware that mathmatical elimiation is just around the corner. I wonder just how much he really knows about hockey or investments for that matter! GM/BM is stuck and therefore the Head Coach is stuck; it's "Catch 22" until the all star break... I am going to bye one of the most expensive seats (For cheap!) behind the Sens bench between Hunt and Hartsburg to give them my two cents worth, loud and often till they throw me out. Might be very educational for these two, I know the players would enjoy it.

Canucnik said...

Correction. All star break should read trading dead line!
PS: If Mr. Melnyk is not smart enough to see through this "one use stadium" and expensive foot ball (Br. Term) team scam. Someone is shuffling some heavy "Jack" around so pay attention people we are in a depression you know.