Sens weigh in on Wade

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 9:46 AM ET

The Senators have delivered a strong message to Wade Redden: They want him to play here next year.

Sources say Senators GM John Muckler had good discussions with Redden's agent Don Meehan yesterday and more talks are planned.

While Redden didn't attend the session which last more than three hours in Toronto, it's believed the two sides exchanged ideas on dollars and terms.

Since the Toronto Maple Leafs are prepared to drop $28.5 million (all figures US) in Bryan McCabe's lap, it's believed Redden's asking price is between $6.25-$6.5 million per year on a long-term deal.

Redden made $3.74 million last year.

The Senators also have to deal with defenceman Zdeno Chara, who will could be another attractive player on the free-agent market if he isn't signed by July 1.

Indications are this isn't going to be all about money for Redden. He wants an idea which direction this organization is going to take under Muckler after another early playoff defeat.

"I'm not sure this signing is a slam-dunk," said a source. "Redden might decide he wants to see what is out there."

WEST TEAMS INTERESTED

Sources say the Vancouver Canucks, Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames are all interested in Redden. The Canucks will make a pitch if they lose Ed Jovanovski on the unrestricted market.

It's believed Muckler reassured Redden that Senators owner Eugene Melnyk is committed to bringing a Stanley Cup to Ottawa.

Meanwhile, centre Jason Spezza remains in Los Angeles while recovering from surgery to repair a disc in his back. Agent Rick Curran told the Sun yesterday that Spezza will need "about a month" before he can get back to his full training regimen to prepare for camp.

"This is going to be good for him and this is going to make him a better player," said Curran. "He was playing with a tremendous amount of pain in the playoffs.

"Fortunately, the procedure was not invasive at all and I've spoken with (Spezza) and he's doing well. He's going to be ready in plenty of time for training camp."

Once Spezza has recovered, Curran will sit down with the club's No. 1 centre and start discussing next year. After making $1.1 million last season, Spezza will be looking for a lofty raise.

"I'm sure in due course we'll begin having discussions with the Senators and this isn't something that I am concerned about," said Curran.


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