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Excitement brewing for Murray again

Wednesday, 23.08.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
Ottawa Senators
The 2006-07 season marks Murray's 16th campaign behind an NHL bench. Photo: A. Ringuette/Freestyle Photography/OSHC

by Todd Anderson

It's right around now - a little less than a month before training camp starts - when Senators head coach Bryan Murray begins to get excited about the upcoming season. Even after 15 years of coaching in the NHL, the anticipation of what lies ahead in the coming months keeps him on pins and needles.

"A month after the season finishes, there are lots of questions you have about yourself and your staff. You go through the whole exercise of what if.' Thankfully, you get over that. For a while now, we've been looking at what we can do different to be better."

Speaking from his family cottage near his hometown of Shawville, Que., Murray says he was pleased with the work done by GM John Muckler this off-season.

"The core is pretty much what it was. It's always disappointing and sad when you lose people like (Zdeno) Chara, (Martin) Havlat, (Bryan) Smolinski and so on. Especially when you don't achieve what you set out to do. But sports are all about change. We've added quality defence with mobility in (Tom) Preissing and (Joe) Corvo. Up front, I only had Havlat for 18 games so, as a coach, I was not dependent on him. To replace the goals he would have scored, there will be demands on others again like (Antoine) Vermette, (Mike) Fisher and (Patrick) Eaves."

In goal, Muckler also added Martin Gerber to the mix. Murray was the general manager of the Anaheim Ducks when Gerber backed up J.S. Giguère during the Ducks' drive to the Stanley Cup final in 2003. So he knows what to expect from the keeper.

"We're fortunate that John and his staff were able to acquire a top-end goalie like this. When (Gerber) was traded to Carolina, it showed what type of person he was. He took over that team and had an outstanding year. It's not all about his wins and losses either. He's consistently a good performer, he works real hard, technically he's really good and he's been well coached. I think the players will really respect him."

While Murray and his wife, Geri, plan to spend the rest of the summer at the family cottage, there has been plenty of opportunity for travel in the past couple of months. After attending the 2006 NHL Entry Draft in Vancouver in June, the couple visited their two daughters, Heide - along with her daughter Emma - and Brittany in Colorado. Next, they spent three weeks in Florida where they still own a home from Murray's days as general manager of the Florida Panthers. Murray also recently returned from a trip to Toronto where he was filmed for a Hockey Night in Canada segment.

STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
3 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
4 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
5 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
6 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
7 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
8 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Karlsson 82 20 54 -15 74
J. Spezza 75 23 43 -26 66
K. Turris 82 26 32 22 58
C. MacArthur 79 24 31 12 55
B. Ryan 70 23 25 7 48
A. Hemsky 75 13 30 -15 43
M. Michalek 82 17 22 -25 39
M. Zibanejad 69 16 17 -15 33
M. Methot 75 6 17 0 23
P. Wiercioch 53 4 19 -1 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Anderson 25 16 8 .911 3.00
R. Lehner 12 15 6 .913 3.06
SENS ARMY FAN POLL