I am deeply dismayed to hear that Eugene Melnyk has been abusing my organ.
The Ottawa Senators supremo was highly derisive of a Frank report (Aug. 13) that he has acquired a new minority partner—Ottawa philanthropist and Sens super fan, Dan Greenberg.
“Confirming the rumour, Ottawa Senators have 3 new equity partners: Sparkles, Frosty and Pebbles — my dogs. Great reporting,” he wrote on his @MelnykEugene twitter account.
Knee-slappers aside, the problem with Munchausen is that even when he tells the truth, believers are scarce. They’ve been bamboozled before.
After all, this is the same Eugene who declared 10 years ago that he would do whatever it takes “to win the damn Stanley Cup.”
But in an interview last January, Eugene sang a different tune, telling TSN radio he had no intention of getting caught in the trap of “trying to buy a championship.”
Buy whaaat? The Sens have the third-lowest payroll in the league, and still old moneybags cries poor while the team’s value has soared. (Fat broadcasting deals with Bell Media/TSN will generate some $30-$40 million in annual revenue for the team over the next 12 years, thus jacking up the value of the Sens and their arena to some $400 million US. Not bad for a $127 million investment in ’03).
And remember when he vowed to build a 10,000- to 20,000 seat rink in Toronto for his junior hockey team, if the owners of Maple Leaf Gardens refused to sell him their arena? They didn’t and Eugene sucked wind.
Then there was his screwy “forensic investigation” into the slicing of Sens defenceman Erik Karlsson’s Achilles tendon by former Pittsburgh Penguins winger Matt Cooke in 2013.
Convinced that Cooke acted with malicious intent, the putty-faced squillionaire took his “findings” to NHL brass in New York, demanding Cooke be drawn and quartered. Much hilarity ensued and it was agreed that the less said about his goofy conspiracy theories the better.
Asked by reporters what, if anything, the NHL intended to do about his forensic inquisition, Melnyk refused to offer any details, saying that he feared the league would fine him $100,000 if he commented. Huh?
More nosestretchers passim: Eugene also promised team captain Daniel Alfredsson he would be an Ottawa Senator for life, then refused to pay him. Alfie bolted to the Detroit Red Wings last season and is still bitter toward his former boss.
Eugene is also fond of ostentatious gestures of true patriot love, like the time he traipsed to Afghanistan to deliver hockey gear to Canadian soldiers in Kandahar. This from the Great CanadianTM who lives in Barbados, the better to avoid paying taxes to his cherished homeland.
With glowing hearts…