The Ottawa Senators saw Bryan Murray step down from his duties as General Manager Sunday, April 10. Murray has served the Ottawa Senators eleven seasons, both as a coach and general manager. Murray has become a senior advisor for a young team that has not seen a deep playoff run since 2006-07. The 73 year-old is currently battling stage 4 colon cancer, and the Senators made a wise move in naming Murray’s protégé Pierre Dorion as the new general manager on Sunday, April 10. With the Sens out of playoff contention a year after being saved by the Hamburglar, what can fans expect?
With the firing of head coach Dave Cameron, the Senators should hire a well-known coach instead of a rookie. The Senators should therefore look to spend top dollar instead of a low price for a rookie coach that does not have NHL experience.
Head coach of the Boston Bruins Claude Julien should be a top candidate that the Senators should seek. The big question for the Bruins’ bench boss is whether he is fired by the Bruins, or sees the Montreal Canadiens as a priority (because of his previous experience with the bleu, blanc, et rouge). Julien has been hired before by Pierre Dorion, when Dorion was in charge of the Junior Senators’ personnel.
Another coach that the Senators should look to is Guy Boucher, former head coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Cooper has coached in Europe for a number of years, and could be a tremendous mentor for a team that should bolster its two-way game.
Ottawa has been known for the advanced statistics movement. Carleton University has been host to the hockey analytics conference two years in a row now, which has attracted a number of well-known industry professionals.
The Ottawa Senators should look to have an advanced statistics department, where a focus on better possession is a must. The Sens’ defence core of Methot-Karlsson and Phaneuf-Ceci should be a group of players bound by structure. Advanced statistics can help the Senators point out the team’s weaknesses and give the team a better outlook as they progress through each season.
A reason why Ottawa has been unable to properly contend in the last ten years is could be because of their lack of stability. Owner Eugene Melnyk should not have the influence on decisions made by Dorion. Melnyk should name a team President, just as the Maple Leafs have done with Brendan Shanahan, and the Canucks with Trevor Linden. Should Daniel Alfredssson be named the president of the Senators?
With the previously mentioned facets of the Ottawa Senators organization, Canada’s capital should be better contenders in the immediate future. The team needs structure, and could really use advanced statistics, a top coach in the league, and a front-office leader that has had experience on and off the ice with the organization. What do you think the Senators should do?