Whine not fine with Murray

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 8:12 AM ET

Bryan Murray didn't have to spell out the message yesterday.

It was posted on the wall for everyone to read.

A group of 49 players reported for medicals at the Corel Centre to start Senators training camp. And all it took for each of them to figure out where they stand in the organization was to look at the way the new Sens coach set up the roster.

Group one for today's first training camp session in two years features the likes of captain Daniel Alfredsson, Martin Havlat, Dany Heatley and Dominik Hasek.

While the 26-man roster for that group is filled with players who will have a legitimate shot at making the team, the second includes those who look like they'll start the season in Binghamton (AHL).

"History plays a big part in these sorts of decisions and so do contracts," said Murray. "I wanted to divide it up so that the players who were going to have a legitimate chance to play on the big team were in one group.

'A LOT OF DECISIONS'

"We have a lot of decisions to make and we've got work to do with the eight pre-season games. There could be guys in the second group -- like Steve Martins -- who are going to get a shot to play pre-season games, but if anybody in the second group is going to move up, they're going to have to earn it."

After being poked, prodded and having their eyes checked by doctors yesterday, the players hit the ice today at 9 a.m. Instead of holding a team dinner last night, Murray simply held a 6 p.m. meeting to introduce the coaching staff and tell these players what's expected of them.

Erasing the memory of another first-round playoff elimination at the hands of the Toronto Maple Leafs in June 2004 no doubt tops the list.

"I don't feel I have to say a lot to these guys. They know what is expected of them," said Murray. "I'm going to tell them that I expect them to come to practice ready to work hard and we're going to do things the right way."

Murray is going to run a tight ship. He has asked captain Daniel Alfredsson to form a four or five-man player committee to handle concerns in the dressing room and doesn't want to hear any whining during the year.

NO COMPLAINTS

"We're going to have days during the season where we're going to have off-ice workouts for conditioning," said Murray. "They're all scheduled for the whole year right now and I don't want to hear any complaining about them. I want all complaints handled by the (committee).

"If those complaints get to my level, then there's going to be problems."

The players have already noticed the difference in attitude. Winger Martin Havlat met with Murray yesterday morning to discuss moving to the left side on a line with Alfredsson. Havlat, a natural right winger, isn't going to resist the change because he wants to win.

"We just talked about me playing the left side," said Havlat. "I don't have a problem with it. I'll do whatever the coaching staff wants me to do and I'll play whatever role they want me to play.

"I'm excited to be back and I'm excited to get going."


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