Senators new president of business operations has 'fantastic' relationship with Melnyk
OTTAWA -- The Ottawa Senators new president of business operations says he has a "fantastic" relationship with owner Eugene Melnyk.
Anthony LeBlanc says being the new president of business operations for his hometown Senators club is his "dream job."
LeBlanc was named president of business operations in April. He was most recently a founding partner of Schooner Sports and Entertainment, the group trying to bring a Canadian Football League team to Halifax.
Appearing on CTV Morning Live Wednesday morning, host Annette Goerner asked Leblanc about his relationship with Melnyk.
"It's fantastic," said LeBlanc. "I've known Eugene off-and-on because I've had history in the NHL down in Arizona for four years as a co-owner and president, so I've had the opportunity to meet him at Board of Governors events."
LeBlanc added, "We talk, I wouldn't say daily, we talk multiple times every day and a very collaborative relationship and really enjoyed it up to this point."
LeBlanc served as president, chief executive officer and alternate governor of the Arizona Coyotes from 2013 to 2017.
Senators fans will be watching Friday's NHL draft lottery to see where the Senators will pick in this year's NHL entry draft.
LeBlanc says the NHL draft lottery could be "arguably, the most important day in Ottawa Senators history."
"Worst case scenario, we're picking five and six in a year that everyone's saying the top eight to ten draft picks are going to be NHL stars. We're in fantastic shape," said LeBlanc.
"Don't get us wrong, we'd love to see the bouncing balls fall our way on Friday evening."
LeBlanc tells CTV Morning Live the Senators are currently working on strategy, a marketing plan and a sales plan to promote the Senators and bring fans back to Canadian Tire Centre when the 2020-2021 season begins.
"We certainly haven't been sitting around waiting for that date to get going. We're working with a number of external advertising agencies in regards to how they may be able to assist us," said LeBlanc about the Senators planning for the return of NHL hockey.
"A great degree of planning has already gone into place. I like to say this is the summer of planning so that we're ready to hit the ground running, I'm thinking right around Labour Day in regards to a real new sales and marketing effort."
With files from The Canadian Press