Stevie Y likely to fly with Wings

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 12:45 PM ET

The future of Detroit Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman will be decided this week.

It's expected the 40-year-old will play one final season with the Wings -- although it has yet to be announced -- and will sit down with GM Ken Holland sometime next week to discuss his future.

The Nepean native has kept himself in good shape during the lockout and still has the desire to play.

He also received an invite from GM Wayne Gretzky to attend Team Canada's Olympic training camp in Kelowna, so another shot at winning a gold medal in the upcoming Games in Turin, Italy, is also a good motivator to return for another NHL season.

It would only make sense for Yzerman to come back.

Detroit fans deserve the chance to say a proper goodbye and the vision of Yzerman, laying on the ice with a bloody towel over his face after getting a puck in the eye against Calgary in the 2004 playoffs, is not the way he should be remembered.

AROUND THE BOARDS: The Philadelphia Flyers would like to sign a couple of blueliners and they've got some big names on their list: Unrestricted free agent D Adam Foote from the Colorado Avalanche and D Scott Niedermayer from the New Jersey Devils ... The Wings will likely buyout W Darren McCarty, C Robert Lang, D Derian Hatcher and possibly C Ray Whitney. The club wants to keep D Nik Lidstrom in the fold and has to find a way to clear out salary. The Flyers would also like to take a run at Hatcher, but don't be surprised if he demands top dollar ... Agent Kevin Epp, Niedermayer's representative, planned to meet with New Jersey GM Lou Lamoriello yesterday to discuss the future of his client. Niedermayer may be seeking the maximum of $7.8 million (all terms US) from any team wanting him in its lineup.

BEHIND THE NET: The Senators won't be alone in their pursuit of LW Gary Roberts. The word is the Carolina Hurricanes, Florida Panthers and Anaheim Mighty Ducks are all interested in the 39-year-old unrestricted free agent. The former Ottawa 67's star spent part of his NHL career in Carolina after returning from a devastating neck injury that required surgery. Sources say Roberts' first choice is to stay in Toronto, but the Senators are a close No. 2 because he wants a shot at winning another Stanley Cup before his career is over. Roberts may also try and convince C Joe Nieuwendyk, who along with Roberts won a Cup with Calgary in 1989, to follow him wherever he goes ... Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson doesn't expect to get booed on opening night at the Corel Centre next season because of his role as a VP on the NHL Players' Association executive committee during the lockout. "I'm very proud of the role I played. I don't think the reception is going to be bad. I can tell you that just going around Ottawa, the people have been very nice and nobody has said anything rude to me," said Alfredsson. "I'm looking forward to that first night at the Corel Centre because it's really going to be exciting to be in front of our fans." ... Not everybody will be happy with the new CBA. The Canadian Assistance Plan has been discontinued, which is tough news for the Flames and Edmonton Oilers. Both teams relied heavily on the plan for more than $2.5 million in funding and it's anybody's guess what they might get from revenue sharing.

RUMOURS DU JOUR: Senators coach Bryan Murray is planning big changes. RW Martin Havlat is going to be moved to the left side, while it's expected C Mike Fisher will also move to the left side next season. That means the club will try to sign a gritty, third-line centre. If the Rangers buy out Bobby Holik, he would be a perfect fit for an Ottawa uniform ... Is there any truth to the talk Atlanta C Dany Heatley, a restricted free agent, has no interest in returning to the Thrashers this season and would rather be traded? Just wondering ...C Pierre Turgeon has been bought out by Dallas, while Phoenix did the same with F Brian Savage.


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