Borowiecki supports controversial Sens video
GATINEAU, Que. — Mark Borowiecki is making no apologies for playing a major role in the latest controversial move by the Ottawa Senators.
The rugged defenceman interviewed owner Eugene Melnyk in a team-produced video released Monday night outlining the Senators’ plan for a rebuild.
The six-minute clip went viral and received significant backlash on social media, but as far Borowiecki is concerned, he did the right thing.
“I was approached and asked to help out with something for the team and I was told what it was and as a member of this organization we had a chance to get a message out to fans and season-ticket holders and I think it’s something fans deserved to know, and probably should have known earlier, and I was happy to kind of help get that message out,” the Ottawa native told reporters before the team’s annual charity golf tournament on Wednesday.
“I did it knowing full well there would be backlash, but that’s part of being an adult sometimes. I’m going to do whatever I can to help this team and I thought fans deserved to know the message, deserved to know the plan. Setting the forum aside, the message was really the important thing there.”
Borowiecki said his priority is to help turn the Senators around after a disastrous run on and off the ice. The team finished secondlast in the NHL and Melnyk hinted at relocation if attendance didn’t improve, although he changed his tune in the wake of those December comments and again in the video, saying the team is staying.
Things didn’t get any better over the summer. There has been constant speculation about captain Erik Karlsson’s future with the squad, which only picked up when his wife filed an order of protection against former teammate Mike Hoffman’s fiancee for alleged cyberbullying. Assistant general manager Randy Lee, meanwhile, resigned after being accused of harassment at a pre-draft combine in Buffalo.
“It’s cool right now to dump on this team, right? That’s the cool thing to do online, I get it,” Borowiecki said. “It’s been a trying year for everyone. There’s been things that have happened outside of our control that have reflected poorly on this organization and I get it, but I’m not going to participate in that. The easy way out for me there would have been for me to say no and keep my head low and let everything blow over and hope I’m here on the other side. That’s easy. Avoid all the backlash, avoid all the criticism, but that’s not the way I’m wired.”
Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki interviewed team owner Eugene Melnyk in a teamproduced video that’s received significant backlash online.