Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Senators GM Dorion Risks Losing Quality Talent at Expansion Draft

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Senators GM Dorion Risks Losing Quality Talent at Expansion Draft

Article excerpt

Sens facing big decisions ahead of expansion draft


OTTAWA - It's only fitting Pierre Dorion is headed to Las Vegas. The Ottawa Senators general manager may have to do some gambling as he prepares for the upcoming expansion draft.

Dorion discussed his plans for the draft Thursday, confirming reports that the Senators had asked defenceman Dion Phaneuf to waive his no-movement clause and allow Ottawa to expose him. But the veteran declined, leaving the Senators and Dorion with some rather big decisions prior to Saturday's 5 p.m. deadline for teams to submit their protected lists.

Had Phaneuf agreed to be exposed the Senators could have protected Erik Karlsson, Marc Methot and Cody Ceci and seven forwards. Now that Phaneuf has to be protected the Senators could lose Methot or Ceci.

"It was explained very well to him, our request and why we were making this request," said Dorion. "It wasn't that we felt he was our fourth best defenceman, it was the fact that we'd like to keep our top four together. At your age and salary (he told Phaneuf) the likelihood of maybe Vegas not taking you was a possibility, but who knows? Maybe Las Vegas would have taken him...

"At the same time my respect for Dion hasn't changed, it's still the same. I still think he's a big part of this team and the fact that he wants to be here tells me a lot about him."

Dorion's other option would be to protect eight players allowing him to keep his four defenceman, but then he risks losing a quality forward.

Ottawa could also look to trade one of its defencemen, including Phaneuf who had to submit a list of 12 teams where he would accept a trade, but Dorion seemed somewhat hesitant on that front.

"If you make a trade with a team then you risk the fact of losing another asset so maybe just accept that you're going to lose one asset. They can't take two players. Maybe as an organization we lose that player, we move forward. Whatever position I feel our depth is very good.

"We feel comfortable with what we've got as far as depth."

Despite things being a little more difficult than he would like Dorion feels confident things will work themselves out.

"We've been preparing for this for over a year so we've looked at every possible scenario," said Dorion. …

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