Melnyk, Senators talk trades

Of all the ways Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk envisioned this season playing out, none of them involved his team being a buyer instead of a seller at the NHL’s trade deadline.

Melnyk, Senators talk trades
Kyle Turris #7 of the Ottawa Senators scores during the shootout against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the game at Consol Energy Center on April 13, 2014 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Senators defeated the Penguins 3-2 in a shootout. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Of all the ways Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk envisioned this season playing out, none of them involved his team being a buyer instead of a seller at the NHL’s trade deadline.

Yet that’s the situation he finds himself in today, as the upstart squad improves and climbs the Eastern Conference standings.

Speaking on Toronto’s Fan 590 radio station Monday night, Melnyk said that, like many in this city, he saw the current campaign as the beginning of a years-long rebuild, not the preface to a potential playoff run.

“I don’t think there’s a single person on the planet that expected us to do, including myself, expected us to do as well as we have,” Melnyk said. “But when you start putting everything together like they have in that dressing room and with the right coaching, the right leadership within the dressing room, young kids that are hungry, throw a little bit of veterans in there and, you know, work hard and enjoy yourself, and next thing you know, you’ve got a winning combination.”

Melnyk said the team has already had internal discussions about how it wants to handle the trade deadline.

The owner also said he expected his team to have some setbacks here in there, pointing out how quickly the Pittsburgh Penguins dropped after losing the likes of Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang.

If it doesn’t?

“If we continue on our road and we’re healthy, we’ll certainly look at doing something prior to the trade deadline and, at the very least, we’ll be looking at doing something.

“But a lot also has to do with not screwing around with a good thing,” he said, noting the players are pleased with their current situation.

“But if they are behind it, this is the one time you let the players speak and they’ll tell you in a heartbeat, yeah, we need this and we need that and that’s it.

“We’ll see what happens. We have a lot of games still to play before we get there.”

Melnyk also took some not-so-subtle shots at former coach Cory Clouston while also talking up current bench boss Paul MacLean.

He noted young players want to be taught how to be better players, “as opposed to being told how badly they played.”

You can listen to the whole interview by clicking here.

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