Melnyk’s mixed messages

The Senators’ owner was on CTV Thursday night, but he wasn’t exactly clear on general manager Bryan Murray’s future of the team.

Melnyk’s mixed messages
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)

Will Ottawa Senators general manager Bryan Murray be back next season or won’t he?

Both scenarios seem possible after a cryptic television interview with team owner Eugene Melnyk Thursday night.

Speaking on CTV Ottawa, Melnyk said he was planning to meet with Murray Friday to see if they can figure out a way to “walk down the aisle.”

While that seemed to suggest the two might talk contract extension, Melnyk later said the future of head coach Cory Clouston would be in the hands of the next GM.

After describing Murray as a “quality man, a man of integrity and loyalty to the organization,” Melnyk added, “look, we get along, so it’s only a question of seeing whether we think he’s the right man for the position over the next several years and whether we can come together, and walk down the aisle together.”

On Clouston’s position, he added: “That would really be involving the next GM, whoever that may be, that’s a hockey ops decision and I’m going to keep it that way.”

Melnyk took time to praise fans in the capital, who have had a rough year.

“It doesn’t surprise me. Not here in Ottawa. They love their hockey. They know their hockey. They know what we’re doing. we’ve always been up front, we’ve said, look we’re going to do our best, we’re not going to patch things up, we’re not going to try to pull the wool over their eyes.

“We have the smartest and the best fans in the NHL.”

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