Emery's a show-stopper

DON BRENNAN -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:17 AM ET

ANAHEIM -- Another world wide stage, another round of bug questions for Ray Emery.

Last week, the spectacularly colourful goalie refused to talk with Sports Illustrated's Michael Farber about how he earned the $500 he used to get a tattoo on his right arm.

On the eve of the Senators' first Stanley Cup final appearance in 80 years, he was again asked about the infamous cockroach eating incident of 2005-06.

This time he relented.

"The cockroach was in the dressing room in Carolina," Emery said from the podium at the Honda Center following yesterday's practice. "The boys had some money up who would eat the cockroach. So I ate the cockroach."

From two seats over, a giggling Mike Fisher couldn't help but chime in with a rare, player-to-player interview query.

"How did it taste?" Fisher asked.

"It was all right," said Emery, grinning. "I guess I'm a bit different."

The Senators can win this Cup if Emery can be a difference-maker. They can do everything else as good or better than the Anaheim Ducks. They are as strong or stronger in every other position.

Point to special teams and shut-down defencemen and line match-ups until the sun sets. It will all come down to goaltending.

"Definitely, it's the key part of the team at this stage," Wade Redden said, standing off to the side a little later. "You don't get here without great goaltending.

"Ray has been solid for us and we know he's going to be that way again. We've got to get some big goals, some timely goals. It's not going to be a high-scoring series. It's just a matter of getting big, timely goals."

Big, timely saves will be the key. But even more so is the limiting of soft goals. If Emery keeps that number low or to zero -- if he can out-duel J.S. Giguere in that category -- the Senators' chances are good.

After swallowing a cockroach, he now has to keep Duck down.

THIS AND THAT

Nearby Laguna Beach is also the name of a TV series that starred Kristen Cavalleri. She used to date Mike Comrie. Google her, click on her photo, and bow if you ever find yourself in the presence of the Senators winger again. We are not worthy ... In talking about his legal and 14% smaller pads, J.S. Giguere got caught up in the moment. "I truly believe the equipment made by Reebok is best," he said before realizing he was sounding like a commercial. Then, without missing a beat, the Ducks goalie decided to sow some seeds: "My deal with them is up at the end of the year." ... Dealing with the three-hour time change is an issue for the Senators, especially during an exciting segment of their life when they must be having difficulty snoozing anyway. "I was up at 4 a.m. and I had to tell myself to go back to sleep," Tom Preissing said of his yesterday morning, "about six times." ... For someone who hasn't played in a long time, Martin Gerber sure does get mentioned a lot these days. "He's a lucky charm," coach Bryan Murray said of Gerber, who was a backup in Anaheim, then Carolina when they went to the Cup. "I'd like to be in the Stanley Cup finals as often as he is."

ICE CHIPS

Ducks defenceman Sean O'Donnell, a 35-year-old Ottawa native, was asked about the possibility of finishing his career as a Senator. He enjoys living in southern California, but admitted anything is possible. "I'd love to go to Ottawa at some point and help them win their first Cup," O'Donnell joked, reiterating his wish that the Senators aren't able to grab that mug just yet ... After two trips to the Stanley Cup finals -- and watching both from the pressbox as either a rookie or because of injury -- Dean McAmmond is getting a chance to play in one. "I have been blessed with a pretty good career," McAmmond said. "In my gut, I always felt that at some point I'd be back." ... McAmmond, who went to nearby Crystal Cathedral church with Mike Fisher yesterday, was asked how long he wants to keep playing. "Until all my kids are in school during the day," quipped the 34-year-old, before realizing that was only two years from now. Then he shrugged. "I'd say two, maybe three years," he said. The way he's going, McAmmond could be one of those guys still playing at 40. ... Skating with Teemu Selanne and Andy McDonald on a key Anaheim line the past three days in practice has been call-up Andrew Miller. He's the brother of Sabres goalie Ryan Miller, and cousin of former NHLers Kip, Kevin and Kelly.


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