Monday, March 10, 2008

How does Rayzor react?

With Bryan Murray having all but declared Martin Gerber as the starting goaltender for the time being, all eyes are on Ray Emery to see if and when the much-maligned goalie will make a mistake. And Ray isn't biting; he's given Emery-haters nothing to work with, and that's bound to be good for the team.

An article on TSN talked about the fact that The Gerber's started the Sens' last six games, and Emery's thoughts on that:

Despite a 1-2-1 record on the team's Western road trip last week and just two wins in his last five starts, Gerber has been the Senators' best player lately. And Emery shares that statement wholeheartedly.

"Gerbs has played well," he said Monday. "I think the team's starting to play better and that's all that matters."

Once again, Rayzor is saying the right things for the media. I've also been hearing on the radio that he's been backing up that lip service with solid work in practice and off the ice, though, which is different from earlier in the season. Emery also looked as happy as The Gerber did after the Sens win over Phoenix, which is awesome to see.

The Gerber has been playing well. His rebound control continues to be something people look at as a weakness, but it seems to be getting progressively better. And as team defense continues to improve, the ability of players to clear those rebounds before opponents can get to them will become a necessary support system . Marty doesn't seem to have a problem stopping the initial shot, which is usually what you ask of a goalie.

Whether The Gerber carries the starter's mantle into the playoffs or Emery gets a shot and runs with it, it seems like either goalie is happier with Murray's system than the win-and-you're-in system of yore. Fans are, too.

Can we say that the goaltending controversy is over? Here's hoping.

EDIT: The minute I posted this I saw this article on the Sens official website, all about The Gerber's improved play.
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