Former Canadian World Juniors and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds head coach Craig Hartsburg was introduced as the new bench boss of the Ottawa Senators today, signing a three-year agreement with the club.
''I know it's a great challenge and I can't wait,'' Hartsburg said at a news conference. ''I love challenges.''
Hartsburg takes over for current general manager Bryan Murray, who replaced John Paddock late in the season.
Earlier in the week it appeared that the job would go to Kitchener Rangers' coach Peter DeBoer, who had met with Melnyk in the Barbados on Wednesday. However, the two sides were unable to reach an agreement.
On Friday, DeBoer accepted the head coaching position with the Florida Panthers.
Last season, the Senators got off to a fast start before struggling down the stretch and squeaking into the playoffs. The Pittsburgh Penguins then swept the Senators in the first round of the playoffs.
''Early in this whole thing, the players will see that there's a plan and we're certainly here as coaches to motivate the players to follow the plan. And then if the plan is not followed, there will certainly be accountability,'' Hartsburg said .
''I don't want to get into specifics, but trust me, there will be accountability. It'll be black and white. They'll know what's right and what's wrong and they'll know there's a line not to cross.''
Hartsburg's last job in the league was as an assistant coach for the Philadelphia Flyers between 2002 and 2004. Prior to that he worked as a head coach for the Anaheim Ducks and the Chicago Blackhawks.
He also helped Canada capture gold at the IIHF World Junior Championship as an assistant to Brent Sutter in 2006. He was then handed the head coaching reigns and capture back-to-back gold medals in 2007 and 2008.