October 22, 2012
Senators defenceman Marc Methot passing time by looking after piranhas
By DON BRENNAN, QMI Agency
OTTAWA - It was a new low, yes, but really just another Boomtown Rats kind of Monday as more members of the media (10) showed up than those we were there to cover (nine) at the local NHLPA union brothers skate at Sensplex.
The players in attendance weren’t looking for sympathy over the dwindling numbers, but admitted a second goalie and enough bodies for a scrimmage sure would have been nice. Still, it’s not like Senators defenceman Marc Methot was about to go home afterwards and take out all his frustrations on the family pet, either.
Soon enough, doing something like that could be a danger to his health.
No, Methot has not purchased an untrained, slobbering Rottweiler, but rather a school of five, yet-to-be-delivered wild red belly piranhas from Big Al’s Aquarium in Kanata.
Now, some will say claims that this type of fish is a man-eater is nothing more than myth — and others would never venture to find out.
“I’ll be feeding them every day ... that will be kind of passing a lot of time doing that,” said Methot. “It sounds extremely boring, but (they were) cheap. It seems like a cheap thrill, so that’s what I’ll be doing.
“They’re high maintenance. You’ve got to feed them every day, just about, and clean the tank every two weeks. It’s a bit of work.”
Asked about the grocery list for a piranha, Methot mentions goldfish, blood worms and mice.
“You just drop them in the tank,” he said. “There’s an alpha male (among the piranhas), and they’ll send one out. They fight in unison. They’ll circle around and force their prey into the middle at the top, and then they all attack. It’s pretty cool.”
It’s also a routine that shouldn’t be neglected.
“They’ll only attack your hands or fingers if you’re thrashing more, and if they’re really hungry,” said Methot. “If they haven’t been fed in a week, and they see something, they’re going to go test it out.”
The engaging Methot, who lives with his young brother Matthieu, never had a pet growing up in Sandy Hill.
“My parents weren’t big dog or cat people,” he said. “So I finally had an opportunity to say hey, I’m going to do this. I’ve got my own place now, dammit, I’m gonna get some fish.
“I wanted to get them last year, but I finally pulled the trigger. Now that I’m here full-time all year, I can take care of them.
“It’s like a small step towards having a real pet,” he added with a laugh.
On a more serious note, Methot is well passed being fed up with the NHL lockout. Acquired from Columbus in a trade for Nick Foligno over the summer, he was very much looking forward to playing for the team he grew up watching. While other Senators have signed with European teams to stay sharp as the NHLPA and owners remain at an impasse, there’s not much of a market overseas for stay-at-home defenceman. So he stays at home and skates three times a week at Sensplex with a handful of his peers.
“I know people don’t feel sorry for us, but we’re skating here and we’ve got five or six players on the ice, and one goaltender ... for a lot of people that have played the game, they understand that’s painful,” said Methot. “Showing up, it’s hard to stay really motivated to skate, and ultimately we have to be out there on the ice skating as much as we can, because you never know when the season starts, so we’re in a tough spot. It isn’t fun right now, I can honestly say that.”
Damaging his spirits last week was the refusal of NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and the owners to carefully study the three counter-proposals they were offered by the players, who had problems with a “best shot” offer made to get the season started, then played in full, by Nov. 2.
“Maybe I lost a little bit of optimism,” said Methot. “I wasn’t confident that it was starting sooner than I thought. Again, there’s so much rhetoric and junk that’s being passed around, it’s tough. We’re standing strong and so are they. I’d like to say I could see the season starting soon, but at this point I’m not so sure.”
ICE CHIPS: Senators winger Colin Greening is the latest to find a place to play during the lockout. He has signed with the Aalborg Pirates of the Danish League ... One of four Senators to play all 82 games last season, defenceman Jared Cowen has now missed Binghamton’s last two with a pulled muscle ... W Mark Stone was a B-Sens scratch Sunday, while tough guy Darren Kramer played for the first time this season ... Staying with the Bingo boys, former 67’s star Shane Prince has missed five straight game with a knee injury ... Also, while goalie Robin Lehner was grabbing the spotlight by throttling Syracuse counterpart Riku Helenius during Saturday’s game at Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena, D Mark Borowiecki was busy padding his penalty minutes total to 40 (through five games) this season. Against the Crunch, “Boro-Cop” had a minor, two fighting majors, a boarding major and a game misconduct (for having three majors). Oh, and he also scored a goal.