No Ray day ... yet

Sens goaltender Ray Emery will have to wait a little longer before making his first start of the...

Sens goaltender Ray Emery will have to wait a little longer before making his first start of the season. (Sun Media File/Errol McGihon)

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:28 AM ET

Senators coach John Paddock will stick with goalie Martin Gerber's hot hand.

While Ray Emery has recovered from off-season wrist surgery, Paddock informed him Gerber will start tonight against Montreal.

There doesn't seem to be a goalie controversy, at least not as far as the players are concerned. Captain Daniel Alfredsson said Gerber "has been the club's best player.

"There's going to be a lot of media pressure and everybody is trying to make a controversy before (Emery) has even started," said Alfredsson. "It's a great situation for us to have. We have great trust in Gerber and we know they want to get Emery in net to play some games. That should give us a great one-two tandem.

"You've got to give (Emery) time to get his game back together. We're just going to play and we definitely believe in both of them."

Gerber, signed to a three-year, $11.1-million contract in the summer of 2006, has a 5-1 record in six starts with a 1.99 goals-against average and .941 save percentage.

Paddock doesn't see any reason to make a switch.

"In some ways, it's like: 'Why change?' (Gerber's) deserved to play, based on his play," said Paddock. "It's not like we're 3-3 and we're looking for a change or a spark or whatever. We're looking for the situation to continue.

"When (Emery) gets in there, it will continue. When he gets in there, we expect him to go back into his spot and the team will just roll on."

Emery, who beat out Gerber for the No. 1 job and led the club to the Stanley Cup final last season, took the news in stride. There's no guarantee he will play Saturday vs. Florida, but it's quite likely.

"I kind of expected that (Gerber would start)," said Emery. "My game might not be 100% right now and the time we have off in the next couple of weeks will allow me to get my legs back under me.

"I have good days and bad days, but it's a situation now where I can actually work at it without thinking about it. You have to readjust to the game and get a feel for things."

Gerber said he was pleased to get the call.

"I was really hoping to (continue playing) and I'm happy to get the chance," said Gerber, who will decide today if he'll wear his new painted mask. "But I would not have been surprised if (Emery) had played because he's got to get some playing time as well. I've just felt really good in the games and in practice. I'm seeing the puck well."

So who's stoking this "goalie controversy?"

There's nothing else for you guys to talk about," said Luke Richardson with a laugh. "It's a luxury to have two guys like this. For us, it doesn't matter who is in there as long as we're winning."


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