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Murray aims to have Gerber decision by Tuesday

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TSN.ca Staff
1/26/2009 9:40:53 PM
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Martin Gerber's tenure in Ottawa looks to be coming to an end.

Senators general manager Bryan Murray spoke to the media today about the goaltender's future amidst reports from Calgary that the Flames are interested in acquiring Gerber to back up Miikka Kiprusoff.

When asked at practice on Monday about the possibility, coach Mike Keenan seemed luke warm at best.

"I have no idea whether [Flames general manager Darryl Sutter] is pursuing Gerber or not, but I think it's out of the question.  His contract is a little heavy.  If you look at contracts and players available in that position, I think that [Curtis McElhinney] is the best solution for us."

Even if a trade isn't made, Gerber's future in the NHL doesn't seem to be in Ottawa.

"There is one team that has expressed some interest," Murray told the media.  "I told him that by tomorrow we will either have some arrangement made for him or we will assign him to Binghamton"

Murray spoke to his goaltender for an hour on Monday about the situation, and the general manager hopes that Gerber will get another chance in the league.

"As I've said many times I like this guy.  I like his attitude," Murray stated.   "He is disappointed but he understands the business enough to know that if it's not going to work here he got to go play and hopefully it will work that his career doesn't end in Ottawa that he has another team and other options as he goes forward." 

Gerber's teammates also feel for their former number one goaltender.

"Hockey is a tough business," centre Jason Spezza said.  "When you see a guy going through what Gerbs is going through you feel for him."

Alex Auld, who was brought in to back up Gerber when the season started, spoke about how Gerber has handled his demotion and recall from the AHL.

"He's been in some tough situations and he's never really complained about it," Auld stated.  "Obviously he's not happy - at the same time he's been a real pro about it."

After signing as a free agent with the Senators in 2006, Gerber was named the team's number one goaltender; however he was outplayed by his backup Ray Emery and ended up sitting on the bench as the team advanced to the Stanley Cup finals.

After Emery elected to undergo off-season surgery, Gerber was once again thrust into the number one role in Ottawa, and this time he ran with it as the Senators got off to a record start.  When Emery returned, the situation became tenuous and the team crumbled and went in to a free-fall that saw them barely sneak into the playoffs before being swept by the Pittsburgh Penguins.

This past season the Senators signed Alex Auld as a free-agent to back up Gerber, however the 34-year old struggled out of the gate as Auld seized the number one spot.  With the recent recall of Brian Elliot it became apparent that Gerber's future in the NHL lies elsewhere.

Martin Gerber (Photo: Getty Images)

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(Photo: Getty Images)
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