During last night's Memorial Cup semi-final Eugene Melnyk made this television appearance during one of the intermissions and threw out June 10th as potential date for when we can expect a new Senators head coach to be in place. As unnerving as it is for those in the anti-Cameron camp to hear that the Mississauga bench boss has The Euge's vote and support, the possibility still exists that Bryan Murray could somehow talk the Senators owner out of the idea.
Now that's not to discredit what Cameron's done in his career. Aside from superficially judging his track record in "big games", my familiarity with Cameron's coaching style is limited and it would be unfair for me to comment on whether or not he is the best fit for Ottawa. So while Cameron does have his detractors, overage defenceman Marc Cantin did have some positive things to say about his coach, “He’s probably going to get some bad attention in the media, because of the world junior stuff,” said Cantin, the 21-year-old rock-solid defenceman who was named the tournament’s most sportsmanlike player. “But I can’t say enough good things about him. He’s an unbelievable coach. There’s a reason why he was the coach of Team Canada. There’s a reason why he’s going to coach in the NHL.”
For me personally, I'm not as uncomfortable with the possibility of a Cameron hire as I am with seeing this as an extension of The Euge's influence over the hockey ops decision making. As fans, we've already grown accustomed to his purported influence over matters like the Alexei Kovalev signing or the decision to inherit a lesser return so that Mike Fisher could go to Nashville. In consideration of how ill advised these moves have been, whether Melnyk decides to reward Cameron's loyalty is going to be an intriguing development to watch.
To end the Cameron blurb on a positive note: at least Don Brennan can save some time by re-using his Ottawa Race Weekend headline in the event that Cameron does get hired.
Louie Caporusso Signs ELC
After Tim Murray was interviewed on the Team 1200 and mentioned that Louie Caporusso, the team's 2007 third round pick was offered a contract and was awaiting a response, I was worried that the Senators could possibly lose him to unrestricted free agency on August 15th. (Note: Similar to how the Leafs lost prospect Bill Sweatt last summer.) Those concerns have been put to ease now that that the Senators have announced that the the University of Michigan product and 6th Sens Podcast guest has signed a two-year entry level contract.
With a number of RFA's on Binghamton's current roster looking for one-way contracts, the addition of Caporusso will inevitably help replace some of the depth that will graduate or move on from the Baby Sens. As an offensive-minded player, hopefully he'll be able to mimic the development of fellow collegiate prospects like Colin Greening and Bobby Butler and bring some of that output to a team that desperately needs more production from its top two lines. However, while he's biding his time in Bingo, I wonder if he'll have less of an issue with the employees of the Binghamton Airport than Pat Cannone.
I highly recommend following him on Twitter (@caporusso89) and in homage, you can also check out this funny video that he was featured in to promote Michigan's Valentine's Day hockey game...
Calder Cup Broadcasts
According to the Ottawa Senators' Twitter (@NHL_Sens), Rogers Sportsnet will be broadcasting the final five games of the AHL Calder Cup Finals live. Nails!
Senators 2011 NHL Draft Notes:
- Now that Jonathan Huberdeau has added the accolade of being the 2011 Mastercard Memorial Cup Most Valuable Player to his resume, I'm ecstatic to see that the Saint John center is making a steady climb up the draft boards. In some circles, there is even discussion that Huberdeau could go as high as number two in the draft.
According to Adrian Dater of the Denver Post, he's hearing a lot more buzz that this is the kid the Avs might take at No. 2 – if he’s still available, that is. One high-ranking NHL person told (Dater) he believes Colorado will take him, in fact, based on what he’s been hearing.
So why am I excited to see Huberdeau, who was projected to be available when the Senators make their 6th overall selection, rise?
The answer is pretty simple: I'd prefer to see the Senators draft the best prospect available. Not the best prospect right now. I'd prefer to have the player who was more highly thought of before Huberdeau has benefitted from the increased exposure of seeing his stacked Seadogs team roll through the postseason.
- Last night on Twitter, I was reading some tweets by ESPN's excellent baseball prospect analyst Keith Law that discussed the upcoming 2011 MLB draft and brought up a good point to a follower who drew some parallels between an undersized prospect and the Red Sox's Dustin Pedroia.
If you draft players thinking each is the next Pedroia, you'll find yourself out of a job in short order. ~ @keithlaw
The only reason why I'm bringing this up is that it serves as a lesson for those fans who lazily refer to Gabriel Landeskog as the next Alfie.
- With the NHL Draft Combine happening this week, I thought I'd throw up this hilarious NBA combine story that comes from Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski - "Most honest Pre-Draft Combine answer ever -- Western Conference team says to prospect: 'We hear you like to smoke, drink, and burn bridges.' Prospect: 'Yeah, I smoke and drink, but whoever told you I burned down a bridge is a (bleeping) liar.'"