TSN: Claire Hanna and Bruce Garrioch on what the Ottawa Senators need to do this offseason, their vacant head coaching position, defenseman Jakob Chychrun and forward Shane Pinto.

** NHLRumors.com transcription

Hanna: “Claire Hanna alongside Postmedia is Bruce Garioch. And Bruce, we’ve heard the word frustrated come out of the Senators’ mouths hundreds of times this season, including today from Captain Brady Tkachuk.

And there’s no doubt that this is a young and talented squad, but what does Steve Staios need to do in the offseason?”

Garrioch: “I think he’s got to roll up his sleeves and get to work quite frankly, Claire. There’s a lot to do and not the least of which is starting to support his captain by putting better players around.

The reality is the Senators shouldn’t be going home right now. But they don’t have enough veteran players in their lineup, and they’ve got some areas that need to be addressed.

One of them I believe, is the goaltending. I mean their goaltending was among the worst in the league this season. I think what they have to do is get some better players to support their captain. Otherwise, they could have some bigger problems on their hands. Going into next season.”

Hanna: “One thing that is going to be guaranteed is the Senators will have a new head coach as Jacque Martin is going to be moving into a consulting role. Thomas Chabot hopes that it’s somebody that holds the players accountable. Who do you think they’re looking at, and do you think the Senators wait until after the playoffs?”

Garriach: “I believe they’ve got a bunch of names on your list including some assistant coaches that are in the National Hockey League playoffs right now. I think the senators are looking at guys like former Minnesota coach Dean Evason, former Los Angeles coach Todd McClellan. I think they kind of kick tires on Craig Berube but it feels to me like that ship has sailed.

Look, the guy who’s on the radar screen who I think is going to be a member of this staff, one way or another is Jon Gruden, the head coach of the American Hockey League, Toronto Marlies. It’s pretty clear to me that they’re waiting to see what happens with his team and so they can get permission to speak with him. Him and Staios go a long way back.

I thought Jacque Martin made an interesting point when he said the general manager has to have a good relationship with the head coach. Staios and Gruden have that relationship, and that’s why he’s a candidate.

Hanna: “Now we didn’t hear from all of the players but we heard from Shane Pinto who’s going to become a restricted free agent this summer. And we heard from Jakob Chychrun, who said beyond next year, he hasn’t really thought about his future with the team. Of course, he’s becoming an unrestricted free agent next year. Where do you think the future stands for those two players?”

Garrioch: “Well, it’s interesting Chychrun gave me the same vibes that Alex DeBrincat gave me on exit day last year, only on a different note. I think that Chychrun knows that he’s probably the piece that’s going to be moved out to help improve this team. He knows he’s an attractive commodity with one year left on his contract, and it might be a trade-and-sign scenario.

Look as far as Shane Pinto goes, he’s part of a long-term solution. I’ve reported several times with the Senators are talking to him about a five and six-year deal, and I would expect that they will be done soon.”

Hanna: “And Shane Pinto is going to be joining teammates Brady Tkachuk and Jake Sanderson with Team USA at the World Championship, while Thomas Chabot and Tim Stutzle will not be participating as they’re healing from injuries they sustained in the season.”


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