Tuesday, July 8, 2008

McGrattan's Parting Shot

It's no secret that Brian McGrattan was unhappy with his reduced role in Ottawa last season under both John Paddock and Bryan Murray but he finally put his frustrations into words last week to the Arizona Republic:

"It's harder in the East for me to basically fight," he said. "Nobody will fight me, and I didn't play that much, two minutes (2:52) a game, a few shifts. If I'd take a tripping or hooking penalty, I'm done, and they'd probably sit me for that game and the next one.
"I was kind of playing on egg shells. It's hard to get into a flow, and I was more nervous about making mistakes than going out and playing like I want to play, to be a factor in the game."

-Arizona Republic

McGrattan now joins a very tough team in Phoenix who already have the underrated Daniel Carcillo and now Todd Fedoruk to battle the likes of Derek Boogard, Aaron Downey and Jody Shelley in the wild Western Conference.

The East is not as tough but the Habs picked up Georges Laraque, the Caps still have Donald Brashear and the Flyers have the league's best kept secret in the brutally efficient heavyweight Riley Cote.

To be sure the Senators have guys who can fight in Chris Neil and Jarkko Ruutu but this will be the first time in ages that the Sens don't have a heavyweight. That could cause some problems down the line.

Some will be glad to see McGrattan go but remember he provided perhaps one of the most satisfying moments in Senators history when he one-punched Tie Domi en route to a KO. That fight alone changed the atmosphere and tilted the balance in the bitter Ontario rivalry that saw the Leafs humiliate the Sens year after year in the playoffs.

If anything, Senators fans should thank the much maligned winger for that one moment.

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