Senators coach keeps 'em loose

Bryan Murray's sharp tongue and sense of humour are a couple of the ways he works at keeping the...

Bryan Murray's sharp tongue and sense of humour are a couple of the ways he works at keeping the Ottawa Senators sharp. (Ottawa Sun File/Sean Kilpatrick)

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 9:41 AM ET

Bryan Murray brought practice to a halt yesterday at the Corel Centre.

The Senators coach raised his voice after a drill being run by the line of Peter Schaefer, Martin Havlat and Antoine Vermette concluded.

"Marty!" yelled Murray, bringing silence to the proceedings. "Marty, don't give it to Peter in front.

"He may have to shoot."

Laughs all around, even from Schaefer.

Murray has been ragging on Schaefer to shoot more (he has just 16 shots in 15 games).

Murray's sharp tongue and sense of humour are a couple of the ways he works at keeping his hockey team sharp.

It's a tough job for a coach who doesn't have much in the way of negative material. Murray did jump on the backs of his best offensive players sitting in front of him when the second unit power play scored Saturday night.

"He gave us the gears," said centre Jason Spezza. "He likes to get under our skin a bit."

Murray remembered yesterday getting a call from an Edmonton writer during the Oilers' heyday. Murray was asked if he would vote for Oilers coach Glen Sather as coach of the year.

" 'Absolutely I would vote for him,' I said. Having a good team and keeping them playing at a good level is an ordeal. You can't take away the fun. You have to let them play. You've got to keep them focused on the next opponent.

"Last week, a couple of times I was upset because I thought we were very comfortable, very sure of ourselves to the point that I thought Buffalo might walk in here ... we might have taken some chances and been negligent."

But the Senators got the job done. That leaves Murray to pick on Schaefer.

"I know Peter is never going to shoot so I can say it to him every day. Until you guys (the media) get on him more often, I don't have a chance with him," said Murray. "He's just going to pass the puck."

"I guess I'll have to take a shot (tonight)," said Schaefer.


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