Ray Emery's latest success story hasn't gone unnoticed by longtime friend Jason Spezza. "He's playing great, he's excited, he's feeling fresh and he's pretty focused right now," the Ottawa Senators centre said Saturday. For those who haven't noticed, Emery, the former Senators goaltender, has written an impressive comeback story with the Anaheim Ducks. After surgery for a career-threatening hip injury, Emery has backstopped the once struggling Ducks into comfortable playoff position in the National Hockey League's Western Conference. Before Saturday's late game against the San Jose Sharks, Emery was 6-0-0 for the Ducks. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that made him the first goaltender in NHL history to win his first three games with his first three NHL teams. Ty Conklin is the only other netminder to have won his first three decisions with three different teams during his career. Emery started 9-0-0 with the Senators and helped take them to the 2007 Stanley Cup final. One controversial season later, though, his contract was bought out and he spent 2008-09 in Russia. He won his first three starts with the Philadelphia Flyers last season, but hip problems ended his stay with Philadelphia and it was only in February — after surgery and a long, hard recovery — that the Ducks took a chance on signing him. Current Senators goaltender Curtis McElhinney began the year as the Ducks' backup, but after starter Jonas Hiller was sidelined with concussion-related problems, McElhinney struggled. The Ducks traded McElhinney to the Tampa Bay Lightning and signed Emery to a two-way NHL-AHL contract. They couldn't have imagined he would become a "godsend" in the words of Ducks coach Randy Carlyle.
Spezza pleased for pal Emery
Ottawa Citizen | Apr 3