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Senators GM Pierre Dorion Makes Front Office Changes; Lets RFA Adam Gaudette Walk

As the Ottawa Senators entered yet another long off-season, it was already believed their hockey operations department was in dire need of a few extra set of hands. Instead of shoring up the department, people started leaving and the Senators quickly found themselves even more shorthanded.
On May 9th, ten days after their season ended, the Senators fired senior vice-president of player development Pierre McGuire. The former coach and broadcaster had only been on the job since last July. He was personally hired by owner Eugene Melnyk, who passed away in March. McGuire now may be dipping his toes back in the broadcast waters, appearing recently on Sportsnet.
Then two weeks ago, assistant GM Peter MacTavish resigned from the team to join Quartexx Management, a sports agency group, now serving as a director, senior counsel and player agent.

Today, exactly one week before the start of the 2022 NHL Draft, Dorion topped up his hockey operations department by naming not one, but two assistant general managers. One is Ryan Bowness, who previously served as the director of professional scouting with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The other is Trent Mann, who’s been serving as the Senators Chief Amateur Scout.

The Sens are basically just putting more responsibility on Mann’s plate. Or maybe it’s just another title. The release indicates Mann “will continue along in the same scouting role while adding greater player developmental responsibilities to his portfolio.”
Doubling up Mann’s duties probably isn’t ideal, but perhaps more hirings are on the way. For now, the scoreboard reads that two executives have left the Sens’ front office this off-season and only one executive has been hired.
Trent’s promotion and Ryan’s hiring represent two significant additions of our front office staff,” said Senators general manager Pierre Dorion in today’s press release. “On top of the success they have achieved in NHL, both are excellent hockey minds, hard workers and quality leaders.
“Trent has shown to be one of the top evaluators of amateur talent in the industry and has progressed to become an invaluable resource to the entire organization.
“Ryan is a critical thinker whose experience will allow him to contribute to a wide variety of areas. His success in professional scouting along with his ability to communicate in detail makes him an ideal complement to our hockey group.”
Bowness knows Ottawa well, spending a bit of his childhood here in the early 90s. He’s the 38 year old son of Rick Bowness, the first head coach in Senators’ history. The younger Bowness has been a hockey lifer, playing four years in the OHL then four more at St. Mary’s University. He worked the last 13 years in hockey ops with the Thrashers, Jets and Penguins, most recently serving as the Pens Director of Pro Scouting. He won a Cup in Pittsburgh in 2017, at the expense of the Sens, who famously lost to Pittsburgh in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final.
The Senators say Bowness will oversee contractual-related items and also serve as the new General Manager of the Belleville Senators in the American Hockey League.
Senators Winger Adam Gaudette Moving On
The Senators also announced today that restricted free agent forward Adam Gaudette won’t be given a qualifying offer from the team. So he’ll become an unrestricted free agent next month. Gaudette was claimed off waivers from Chicago in late November. He had 12 points in 50 games for the Senators.

Gaudette made just under a million dollars this season and the Sens have several younger, cheaper options who can capably replace him. Depending on how he fares in free agency around the league this summer, perhaps he’s a player the Sens circle back on some day.
Senators Announce Their Pre-Season Schedule
The Senators pre-season schedule has been released. After two dismal starts to the past two seasons, the club is expected to pare their roster down early this fall to be sure their NHL regulars are all on the same page for opening night. They play seven of their eight pre-season games against Atlantic rivals from Toronto and Montreal. The final two games will be in Gander, Newfoundland and Moncton, New Brunswick as part of Kraft Hockeyville.

By Steve Warne | Faces Magazine

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