Senators need net gain

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:44 AM ET

With the NHL draft over, Senators GM Bryan Murray needs a backup plan.

With goaltender Ray Emery officially gone after clearing waivers on Saturday, Murray is expected to bring a goalie to stand behind No. 1 Martin Gerber next season.

Two viable options are Pittsburgh Penguins' unrestricted free agent Ty Conklin and Edmonton Oilers' Dwayne Roloson.

Conklin, who made $500,000 with the Penguins, did a solid job when Marc-Andre Fleury was injured last season. While the 32-year-old Conklin had a 17-4-5 record during the absence of Fleury, who had a high ankle sprain, the Penguins aren't going to bring him back because they likely won't want to cough up $1 million for a backup goalie.

Roloson is scheduled to make $3 million this season, but the Oilers have decided it's time to move on. If he's brought in, he could challenge Gerber for the No. 1 job. Murray spent part of the weekend trying to acquire a backup for Gerber, who is making $3.7 million, but couldn't close any deals.

The Senators could bring up Brian Elliott to dress as Gerber's backup next season, but they'd rather not accelerate the development of the 23-year-old netminder and give him the opportunity to hone his skills in Binghamton.

STARTED WITH OILERS

Conklin's up-and-down career began with the Oilers. He has had his share of stops in the minors -- including Hartford, Syracuse, Hamilton and Wilkes-Barre -- but signed with the Penguins last year with no promises that he'd play.

Goaltending isn't the only issue Murray has to deal with: The club is looking for help on the blue line. They're one of the teams interested San Jose defenceman Brian Campbell, but there'll likely be a bidding war involving several teams.

The Senators also have to decide what to do with tough guy Brian McGrattan. They could sign him to a two-way contract, maybe to deal him elsewhere because the minor-league clause will make him more attractive to other teams.

Winger Shean Donovan is willing to accept a paycut from the $925,000 he made last season, but wants more than a one-year deal.

The Senators also haven't ruled out bringing back Cory Stillman, but the chances of getting a deal appear slim.

"For the GMs, this is a busy time and they're all preparing to look at all different scenarios," said Senators coach Craig Hartsburg. "For me, just coming aboard, we've had lots of discussions about our team. Over the course of the next week, that's something we're going to have a chance to talk about."


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