Bad-mouthed, berated, banned: Fan frustration with Eugene Melnyk boils over
Failure of LeBreton Flats deal the last straw for many Senators faithful
He traded away their favourite players and failed to bring an arena to LeBreton Flats. Now Senators fans, the mayor and even an Ottawa restaurant have had it with Eugene Melnyk, and they're letting him know it.
- Eugene Melnyk walks back comments on relocating Senators
- Melnyk sues partners in 'failed' arena venture
- Melnyk didn't want to pay for new arena, Trinity claims
Even before the LeBreton deal died Wednesday, Ottawa's Mongolian Village East announced on Facebook it was banning Melnyk from the restaurant.
Co-owner Andrew Saikaley placed the blame for top scorer Mark Stone's trade to Las Vegas squarely on Melnyk.
"For a player like that to not want to stay on the team when he was going to be a major component to our rebuild … kind of says a lot about the management and the players, as well as the disconnect between the team and the fan base," Saikaley said.
"I wouldn't say Ottawans are impatient. We give chances to people and we support whenever we can, but it seems like a slow downhill progression of what's going on with the team."
To many fans, things hit rock bottom Wednesday with news that mediation had failed to save the LeBreton deal.
Melnyk leaving mediation <a href="https://t.co/K8V24cOfKD">pic.twitter.com/K8V24cOfKD</a>—@CoachMarc1
This is how I feel as a Sens fan <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Ottawa?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Ottawa</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Senators?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Senators</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sens?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sens</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/melnykout?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#melnykout</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ottawasenators?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#ottawasenators</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/nhl?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#nhl</a> <a href="https://t.co/S1sfPDXs2c">pic.twitter.com/S1sfPDXs2c</a>—@AJGD77
Credit to the City Of Ottawa and <a href="https://twitter.com/JimWatsonOttawa?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JimWatsonOttawa</a> for not letting themselves get bullied by <a href="https://twitter.com/MelnykEugene?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MelnykEugene</a>. Sick of cities getting screwed over in stadium deals. As much as this sucks, it's good that Melnyk is getting shown up. Downtown Arena needed, but <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MelnykOut?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MelnykOut</a> is needed more—@ItsAlexMarshall
Melynk's pledge to keep looking for a new downtown location didn't help.
I'll never give up saying <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MelnykOut?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MelnykOut</a>—@melnykbot
Melnyk looks at Greenbelt: Look at how much space we have for an arena!—@spacehasnoedge
A few fans tried to put a positive spin on things.
People are painting this Lebreton news as bad and I'll counter with the notion that if you're looking for evidence that Melnyk's options for continuing on as a viable NHL owner are being closed off more quickly, this is the opposite of bad.—@DefenseMinister
The one thing Melnyk has done for Ottawa fans is make Leafs fans genuinely feel sorry for them. That's quite the accomplishment—@TalkeyHockey
Maybe Melnyk's not to blame, one fan ventured.
There are many issues going on with Ottawa, and it’s not solely on Melnyk, although he plays a big part in the issues.—@Medzy11
Another suggested Melnyk and Sens GM Pierre Dorion borrow a popular Jimmy Kimmel gag.
Can we get Dorion and Melnyk to do mean tweets?—@TheLastSen95