Phillips steps back into the picture as Senators rebrand their business operations

Article content

The official return of Chris Phillips to the Ottawa Senators organization is another positive piece in the club’s rebranding exercise.

Advertisement 2

Article content

Phillips is now the Senators new vice president of business operations, working to help repair long lost relationships with the city’s corporate community.

Article content

Back in July, 2021, Phillips, who holds the franchise record for most games played, abruptly resigned as executive director of the Senators Community Foundation, following a dispute with late Senators owner Eugene Melnyk.

Article content

“Honestly, it’s something that I was thinking about and I’m excited to be involved with, to work with some of the top executives of the organization to try and learn the business,” he said.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

While Phillips has been busy with other projects outside of hockey, including real estate, he laughed at suggestions that those endeavours helped him land the new gig.

Advertisement 3

Article content

“Little things like that certainly help, but I don’t know if needed that on my resume. My games played (1,179) might have been on the resume,” he said.

Phillips, who was a major part of the dominant Senators squads at the turn of century, says he can feel the buzz of excitement in the air from everyone, including the corporate community that had a strained relationship with Melnyk.

As part of the new job, Phillips is also receiving a first-hand look at the massive project to potentially build a new arena at LeBreton Flats.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

“There really has just been a steady release of positive stories, which is, to be quite honest, a nice change.”

In addition to the return of Phillips, fellow longtime popular Senator Chris Neil has been promoted to vice-president of business and community development. Neil is also a big part of the organization’s renewed commitment to re-establishing trust with the corporate community.

Advertisement 4

Article content

All of the above naturally gives rise to questions of whether Daniel Alfredsson would ever return to the Senators in an official capacity.

Former player Chris Neil, seen Wednesday at the Canadian Tire Centre, has been named VP of business and community development.
Former player Chris Neil, seen Wednesday at the Canadian Tire Centre, has been named VP of business and community development. Photo by Julie Oliver /Postmedia

Alfredsson spent less than two years as senior adviser of hockey operations before resigning in 2017 in a clash with Melnyk.

Alfredssson, the most popular player in franchise history, was named to the Hockey Hall of Fame in the summer. Before Alfredsson is officially inducted into the Hall in November, the Senators will pay tribute in a pre-game ceremony.

Asked if he might play a role in bringing Alfredsson back to the front office, Phillips said, “if I do that, maybe they’ll give me a statue.”

[email protected]

Advertisement 1


Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.