Murray contemplates splitting Heatley and Spezza for Game 5

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Ottawa is down 3-1 in the best-of-seven Cup final heading into Game 5 on Wednesday night (8 p.m. ET) with Spezza and Heatley not doing a whole lot in the series. Murray says he's thought about separating them before now.

"Yes I have, a number of times during the series," Murray said. "You know, you keep waiting and hoping that they get back to moving their feet they way they were. ...

"So I have thought about doing something. And maybe tomorrow that will have to be the case."


GIGGY'S FUTURE: Ducks goalie J.S. Giguere is an unrestricted free agent July 1 but made it clear Tuesday where he wants to be.

"I'd love to re-sign here," said Giguere. "This is a team that's going to be good for many years. You want to be part of a team like that. It's well-run.; it's well-owned; it's well-coached. This would be my No. 1 pick.

"There are many reasons: I've got my house here, I feel very comfortable around here. My son's doctors are all around here, at UCLA. There are many reasons why I would want to sign here. Is it going to happen? Hey - I don't have a (crystal) ball. We'll see."


NO SKATE: The Ottawa Senators once again won't have a pre-game skate Wednesday before a 5 p.m. local game. Not that they don't want one. Head coach Bryan Murray said he'd like to have an early skate but the Ducks won't let them skate before them. The home team always skates first, in this case at 9:30 a.m. local time and Murray says the Ducks won't allow his team to skate before them.

"We'd certainly like to," Murray said.

Ottawa is allowed to skate at 10:30 a.m. but Murray feels that's too late in the day for a 5 p.m. start.


TOO MANY CHANCES: Ottawa head coach Bryan Murray says his team is guilty of taking too many chances.

"We're trying to score goals when we should just be playing," said Murray. "And I think that's the biggest thing that's happened. Watching (Game 4) over again, we're taking all kinds of chances. They're creating all their offence off our mistakes because we're gambling to keep the puck in play where a third man is jumping in.

"I've told (his players), it's the not the way we played in the first three rounds."


CALMING INFLUENCE: Scott Niedermayer, the only Anaheim player with a Stanley Cup ring, will be a calming influence if the Ducks need one when they try to close out the NHL's championship series Wednesday, says coach Randy Carlyle.

"He's been in Olympic gold medal games, world championship gold medal games and major junior title games," says Carlyle. "It's his whole demeanour that's a calming effect.

"He's not a real vocal individual. What you see is what you get with Scotty. I think he would rather not talk in most situations. He's the kind of guy that likes to be private, but he leads by example."

Niedermayer urged his teammates to retain their composure when they became enraged after Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson slapped a puck that struck him in the midsection at the end of the second period in Game 4.

"I know that definitely hit a chord with our hockey club," said Carlyle. "The thing that surprised me the most about it all was that Scott Niedermayer took it upon himself and told the team to just turn the page on it.

"That's a leadership statement. He sensed the situation was we could be putting ourselves in jeopardy of losing our focus on the task at hand. Those things are monumental in pressure situations, and it's important that we never lose sight of that fact."


SELANNE EXCITED: Teemu Selanne, the Ducks' 36-year-old Finnish forward, can't wait to try and clinch the NHL title and earn his first Stanley Cup ring on Wednesday night.

"Our goal is to play our best game of the series," Selanne said after practice Tuesday. "We know how much is on the line."

Selanne has five goals and 10 assists for 15 points this post-season. Only Ryan Getzlaf, who has 16 points including seven goals, has more playoff points for Anaheim.


SWEATSHIRT SAYING: The words on the back of the Ducks' team-issued sweatshirts: "Be Humble, Be Hungry." GM Brian Burke had the club motto on his back and running shoes after a session in the club's gym.



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