On June 8th, 2004, Bryan Murray was named head coach of the Ottawa Senators and resigned from his post in Anaheim. After two very successful years at the bench, Eugene Melnyk decided to shake up things a bit by removing John Muckler as GM and hiring Bryan Murray. Murray, who had spent 26 season before being named GM, had previously been at the helm of the Florida Panthers, Detroit Red Wings, and most recently Anaheim Ducks. Known as an excellent drafter, Bryan saw room for change in Ottawa and saw he needed to do some tooling in order to re-create the Sens. Here’s some trades Murray had crafted and put his fist on. Note that I’m not counting trades that only include draft picks.
July 17th, 2007
To Ottawa: Shean Donovan
To Boston: Peter Schaefer
After Schaefer requested from a trade after the Cup Finals, Murray spent the majority of the off-season trying to find him a home. Finally, Boston was willing to take Schaefer and his contract for Shean Donovan. Donovan has primarily been on the third line in his tenure with Ottawa. His speed is much needed on thir roster, while Schaefer is buried somewhere in the AHL.
February 11th, 2008
To Ottawa: Cory Stillman, Mike Commordore
To Carolina: Joe Corvo, Patrick Eaves
Corvo also demanded a trade out of Ottawa which put Murray in a tough position. Both Corvo and Eaves had contracts past 2008, unlike Stillman and Commodore. Cory provided some much needed secondary depth while Commdore did squat. None of them re-signed and Eaves was traded once again, meaning Ottawa essentially gave Carolina Corvo for free.
February 26th, 2008
To Ottawa: Martin Lapointe
To Chicago: 169th overall pick in 2008 (Ben Smith)
In need of some grit, Murray acquired Lapointe who also did squat and took relentless penalties every night. However, unless Ben Smith turns into the next Sidney Crosby, this wasn’t much of a bad trade.
June 25th, 2008
To Ottawa: 146th overall pick in 2009 (Jeff Costello)
To Phoenix: Brian McGrattan
There wasn’t anymore room for McGrattan on the roster and with the Ruutu signing he was expandable. McGrattan entered the NHL Substance Abuse Program with Phoenix so not a bad trade.
August 29th, 2008
To Ottawa: Filip Kuba, Alexandre Picard, 26th overall pick in 2009
To Tampa Bay: Andrej Meszaros
Ottawa clearly killed Tampa on this deal. Meszaros couldn’t get signed, while Kuba got more points than Meszaros for a cheaper price. Picard was also a nice addition and the first rounder was snazzy, as we used that in a later trade.
September 2nd, 2008
To Ottawa: Ryan Shannon
To Vancouver: Lawrence Nycholat
Nycholat also requested a trade out of Ottawa and got his wish. He wasn’t going to make the lineup anytime soon while Shannon, though small, has killer speed and instincts for the ice. He worked out perfectly for Ottawa while Nycholat has packed his luggage too many times.
February 20th, 2009
To Ottawa: Mike Comrie, Chris Campoli
To New York Islanders: Dean McAmmond, 26th overall pick in 2009 (Kyle Palmieri)
In the search for a puck-moving defenseman, Campoli was acquired and his vision of the ice helped Ottawa in their late-season run. Comrie was thrown in for salary cap purposes and is currently a UFA. Palmieri looks good and a second first rounder would have looked good if you ask me
March 4th, 2009
To Ottawa: Pascal LeClaire, 46th pick in 2009 (Robin Lehner)
To Columbus: Antoine Vermette
Getting a No.1 goalie was the priority for Murray, and come D-Day, he got his early. LeClaire has had injury problems but when he’s healthy he’s a great goalie. We also got Lehner in the Draft and even though Vermette was a valuable asset in Ottawa, he needed a change of scenery.
July 8th, 2009
To Ottawa: 6th round pick in 2010 (SJ)
To Dallas: Alexander Auld
After Elliott emerged as the backup for Leclaire, Auld was expandable, even though a higher return was expected. Auld was reliable and did play better than that other goaltender who we signed to a 3 year contract, 3 years ago.
Well, if you add the grades up, his trading has been a B overall. There’s still room to improve, but Murray is turning out into a very good GM, building for the future, unlike that previous uncool brain defected GM *cough Mucks cough*.