A few days ago Sportsnet anchor Brad May said on air that Jason Spezza never asked to be traded. In fact he wanted a commitment from ownership to spend the necessary money to win. If they can’t do that he would like to go somewhere that wants to win.
When further questioned by BonksMullet writer Kevin Lee, May stood by his comments indeed confirming that this was the case.
If this is actually true, it wouldn’t surprise me at all. Last August it was reported by the Ottawa Citizen that the Ottawa Senators have lost $94 million dollars under owner Eugene Melnyk’s wing.
“Could we spend more money on players? You could,” Melnyk said during a lengthy interview with the Citizen. “But stats have proven over and over that there is a road of less return because you’re starting then to pay for more mediocre players, especially in the unrestricted free agent market where everybody is scrambling.
“It’s no different than the horses,” he added. “You’ve got your superstars up here, then you’ve got the other 80 per cent.”
The difference in talent between the top and the bottom outside the pool of superstars is “marginal” Melnyk noted, and not worth the extra spending — especially when other factors such as coaching, linemates and the free agent’s work ethic can be great equalizers when it comes to talent.
Certainly this is the lesson Melnyk drew from the experience of the 2010-11 season, when, according to Capgeek.com, he spent nearly the maximum allowed on salaries and his team still failed to make the playoffs.
Could Sens GM Bryan Murray be covering up for Melnyk yet again? Is this another “Daniel Alfredsson” situation?
It sure sounds like it.