The Senators made a step into looking into next year as GM Bryan Murray said that Ray Emery is not in his plans for the Senators next season. This is after Emery was the center of many conflicts this season due to his tardiness for practice, as well as off-ice issues that seeped into the dressing room. As stated in the CBA, the Senators can buy out the rest of Emery's almost $3.2M contract at only 1/3rd of the price since Emery is under-26.
To say Emery was a distraction could be considered as an understatement of the year candidate. I wouldn't go as far as saying he was a "cancer" as many people would, but he did ruffle some feathers in the locker room with his antics off the ice. Also, it seemed that he wanted to be the center of attention with the way he dressed and the car he drove, which didn't help his cause when he may have wanted to maintain a low-key persona after all of the hub-bub went down.
The big question is, what is next for Emery?? With the lack of goaltending talent on the free agent market this summer, Emery could be a very hot property. However, what coach and GM would be willing to take the drama that comes with Emery?? The risk/reward is definitely something that has to be taken into account, because when Emery is on, he is a great goalie. Yet, this season he never really showed the sparks of greatness that helped him get the Sens to the Cup. Many wonder if his wrist/hand injury healed completely or if it's still bugging him.
So here goes Ray Emery-- more than likely trying to find a new spot in the hockey lexicon and maybe trying to get his career back on the right track before it was derailed by this past season. He seems to be learning as he goes along, though in some cases he learns a little too late for his own good.
For the Senators, it'll be a chance for them to promote Brian Elliott or Jeff Glass in order for them to back-up Martin Gerber. Granted, the idea of a young back-up could cause much panic for the Senators, especially should Gerber go down to injury. Expect some UFA shopping for a cheap back-up on the Senators wish-list.
The drama continues to unfold in Canada's capitol, which should only create more storylines by the time the Draft rolls around.