It didn’t take long for a decision to be made.
The Ottawa Senators held a news conference early Sunday morning, confirming the long-awaited speculation that Bryan Murray would step down from his role as General Manager. After bidding what was an emotional goodbye and confirming he would be taking on a lesser role at the Senators’ Senior Advisor, Murray officially announced that former Assistant GM Pierre Dorion would be filling his role. Dorion is now the team’s eighth general manager in history, after first joining the team’s staff back in 2007.
"I'm stepping into big shoes." – new #Sens GM Pierre Dorion
— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) April 10, 2016
While other news may have been expected – in regards to more clean-ups within the organization’s staff – Dorion made it clear the Senators’ wanted this day to be about Murray and the legacy of his career.
Ottawa Senators’ Looking Back Before Moving Forward
Before moving forward to a new GM, many paid lots of respect to Murray’s career. After working countless years as both a head coach and general manager, Murray spent the last 12 years of his career in Ottawa working in both capacities. And though his career is not yet over, it’s certainly what it feels like. Murray was sent well wishes from many throughout the NHL community today over social media.
This may be the first of many steps towards turning Ottawa’s hockey team around after a miserable season, but it was a courteous decision to give this day to Murray before making more changes within the organization. Although to some he’s become a polarizing figure, his hockey career, his personality, and his public fight against cancer deserve the world’s respect.
Pierre Dorion – The Pressure for Change
Looking forward to a future with a new general manager, Dorion comes into a situation with a lot of pressure on his shoulders. Following a disappointing season that had the team’s owner expressing their desperate need for change, the offseason has many waiting on those words. It can be expected that some of Dorion’s first public moves will involve his evaluation of head coach Dave Cameron – many of whom believe he will be fired – along with evaluating the needs within the current roster.
With pending decisions on the future of many players including Mike Hoffman, Mika Zibanejad, Patrick Wiercioch and more, Dorion has his hands full. And, you can expect the entire city will be eagerly awaiting his every move.
Whether or not he will show much of a difference from having Murray in his position remains to be seen. But, speculation has already gone south.
Does it matter who the GM is or should the question be: can any person be a successful GM under Eugene Melnyk?
— Graeme Nichols (@6thSens) April 10, 2016
An organization that’s desperate for change. Let’s see what the summer holds.