Senators owner: Entire team 'under the microscope'

Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk, with it looking as though his team will miss the playoffs, told reporters Tuesday that there would be "key changes" and "no one is safe" after the season.

"I'm looking at all of it -- right across the board. There's no one that's safe when you've had a year like we just did. There's no way," Melnyk said, according to TSN.

"The status quo will just get us there again next year. And this team cannot survive not making the playoffs. You can't just throw money at these things. We need to do it a different way, and I think we are."

Melnyk mentioned some specific decisions by Senators coach Dave Cameron that he did not like, adding fuel to the speculation that Cameron is on the hot seat.

Among those decisions: Cameron's starting rookie goaltender Matt O'Connor in the team's home opener in October, rather than starting Craig Anderson on back-to-back nights.

"It was inconsistency and some stupidity," Melnyk said Tuesday. "I go back to the [home opener] and you put in the second goalie. Like, what was that about on opening night? And the guy gets clobbered. That's not fair to him; it's not fair to the fans."

Cameron became coach in December 2014, and the team finished that season with a remarkable 21-3-3 run to clinch a playoff berth before losing in a hard-fought first-round series against the Montreal Canadiens.

Ottawa is seven points out of the final wild-card spot in the East, despite trading for defenseman Dion Phaneuf before the deadline.

Senators general manager Bryan Murray, who was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer two years ago, is supposed to make a decision about his own future with the organization after the season.

A possible replacement for Murray, 73, could be former Senators star Daniel Alfredsson, who is currently a senior adviser to hockey operations. Alfredsson recently told TSN that he hasn't had any formal discussions about becoming the GM.

But Melnyk made it clear he is not just looking at internal candidates.

"We're grooming people; we're looking," Melnyk said. "I think after the season is done, you'll see fallouts everywhere. There's going to be a lot of changes in the NHL with coaches and general managers, but right now I leave it to Bryan.

"I think every single aspect of the team is under the microscope right now."