Monday, April 14, 2008


What was that again, about how pride goeth before the fall? Take it away, Chris Stevenson:
"In what is surely one of the stupidest and most ignorant moves going, somebody with the Senators organization decided to cover a wall near the Penguins dressing room in Scotiabank Place with a large mural. It's a photo of the Senators shaking hands with the Penguins after the Senators eliminated them in their first-round matchup last spring.
"... The photo smacks of arrogance — unearned by this franchise, frankly, which has been a notorious underachiever at this time of year and has little reason to look down on any other or rob the noses of opposing players in defeat." — Chris Stevenson, Sun Media, Apr. 14, 2008
Strange, you could have deduced this just on a gut feeling 15 months ago:
"Obviously, if it's OK for Senators employees to make a video mocking other teams and show it at every game, then it suggests something about the office culture out there in the wilds of Kanata — instead of pride in one's organization, there's a false, defeatist pride built on running down others." — Out of Left Field, Jan. 14, 2007
Enjoy the game tonight, all.


Big V said...

Maybe Mr. Stevens should do his homework...
In the TSN report tonight, they mentioned that the mural was put up well before the Sens knew who they would be playing first round.
Also... Is it true that that was the first time the sens have won a series on Home ice?

sager said...

Big V,

Mr. Stevenson did do his homework, if you read the column on the Ottawa Sun's website it does note, "Just about any photo of the Senators' great run last spring would have sufficed to fill the space."

His point was that they had to be aware the team might be playing Pittsburgh... they could have picked a photo from the Buffalo series, seeing as the Sabres weren't even in the playoffs.

Not sure if that was the first time they've clinched at home... they wouldn't have done it in '98 when they were the 8 seed and beat New Jersey in six games?

Big V said...

You got me there... both cases...

Just say they had put the mural up of another team... and they played them next year? Same critisisms?

sager said...

Good question... the best answer is that the media wouldn't let it go uncommented upon.

Bottom line, they should have had a contingency plan in case they played the Pens. Why not put a mural of the fans celebrating at one of the rallies?

Anonymous said...

On another related subject, it speaks volumes about the mentality of the Sens brass when justified criticism via comments on the front office blog of the team's official web site never get posted by the editors. Criticism, might I add, that if taken, would go a long towards helping them over the playoff hump. Pity.

J.P., aka Edna

Dennis Prouse said...

Well, J.P., you were right and I was dead wrong. The Sens are indeed down 3 zip, and clearly do not belong on the same ice as the Penguins. The bizarre malaise that has gripped this hockey club for most of the season was clearly real. Combine that with the injuries, and an excellent young Penguin club coming into its own, and you have what you have. I was looking at this thing through red tinted glasses a week ago, but you nailed it perfectly.

Tell you what - if I'm Bryan Murray, watching the news of Dave Nonis's demise in Vancouver, I'm getting pretty nervous. If Nonis can be fired one year after the Canucks get the most points in franchise history, then how secure can Murray be? In fact, I believe that Nonis was canned so that the Canucks can hold onto Steve Tambellini, a guy who would have been coveted by some teams, including perhaps Ottawa, as a GM this Spring after some housecleaning takes place.

Mikey said...

I think the Pens intimidation photograph and last year's silly video clips part of the struggles of a franchise to create an identity and tradition connected to their modern Ottawa winning history.

I can't help but also think of the giant Sens army mural that served as one of the most ironic photographic backdrops to Murray et. al. in the past few weeks in the papers.

Dramatic irony is more precise like it. While many pundits and, in particular, radio personalities liked to blame locker room issues and cross their fingers for playoff success, the hockey specific problems in the club run deep and complex. Despite our best hopes and cheering, this outcome wasn't difficult to foresee.

Next time Sens brass, skip the imagery until Lord Stanley is in the frame and work on making promotions and the arena experience at Scotiabank hockey and hockey-fan centered.

Finally Neate, if the Cubs are Toronto, can we be the not-so-long suffering version of the Sox and pull off the return from 3-down?

sager said...

Never say never, Michael. It's evident that the new NHL is decimating the Sens somewhat; they keep going backwards in terms of trades (Havlat gone, then Preissing gone, then Corvo gone).

It's clear the players haven't pulled together... the best explanation I've read is that the team has 3 camps: Older, settled players with families; young guys who still like to rip and tear, and the newbies are in the middle.

If they won, they would pull together, but they aren't winning.