|Senators coach Cory Clouston did not exactly get a vote of confidence today from his boss, team general manager Bryan Murray. (QMI Agency file photo)
OTTAWA - Cory Clouston is on thin ice.
This could be a big weekend for the Senators’ embattled coach after GM Bryan Murray refused to give him a vote of confidence Wednesday following a 45-minute workout at Scotiabank Place.
After reading the riot act to the players before practice, Murray said in a scrum with reporters he couldn’t confirm Clouston is going to coach this club until the end of the season.
Clouston is in the final year of his contract and it would appear he’s facing a couple of must-wins Friday against the Blackhawks in Chicago and Saturday at home versus the Tampa Bay Lighting.
“I’m not going to answer a question like that because I don’t know,” said Murray. “We go to Chicago. We come home and play Tampa. We go on the road the following week. I can’t answer that honestly. I’ve talked to the staff about that. We’re all in a position where we have to do a better job.”
There was some good news Wednesday as assistant coach Luke Richardson returned to the ice for the first time since the tragic death of his 14-year-old daughter Daron in mid-November.
Richardson didn’t address the media and likely won’t for a few days. The players were happy to see him.
“We don’t even know what he’s been through the last little while but to see him back on the ice with us gives him a little bit more sense normalcy. I’m pretty proud of him for getting back out there,” said defenceman Chris Phillips.
Goaltender Pascal Leclaire also skated for 25 minutes. He won’t play in Chicago but should dress as the backup.