Auld is eager to please

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:00 AM ET

NEW YORK -- Alex Auld wants to make a strong first impression.

Signed as a free agent in the off-season after finishing last season with Boston, Auld, 27, will make his Senators debut tonight against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

The Sens have not held a scrimmage yet at camp, so tonight gives Auld his first chance to let GM Bryan Murray and coach Craig Hartsburg know they've got the right backup for Martin Gerber.

"The first goal is to be ready whenever you are called upon," said Auld. "As a player, in any position, you want to make it hard for them to pull you out of the lineup. They've got great goaltending depth in this organization and I'm fine with whatever role they give me."

Auld said tonight will be a good test.

"It's the first time I'm going to get a chance to play here and the first game in a while," Auld said. "It's important to approach it like a normal game even though it's a pre-season game. Before you know it, we're going to be right into it."

Hartsburg isn't concerned about Auld pushing Gerber for the No. 1 job.

"He needs to be a good goalie for us. We're a team that's going to rely on both of them to be good," said Hartsburg. "We expect him to be a good goalie and play well and continue to get himself to where he's at the top of his game because we're going to use him. He may not play as much as Gerber, but the nights he plays, he needs to play well."


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