Goalie: 'I never said it was really bad'

Updated: May 17, 2007, 12:13 AM ET
Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Senators goalie Ray Emery would like to clear up some comments that Buffalonians might have taken the wrong way.

Goaltender
Ottawa Senators

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2007 SEASON STATISTICS
GM W L T SV% GAA
58 33 16 0 .918 2.47

He doesn't dislike Buffalo, it's just that the city doesn't have as much to offer in comparison to, say, Manhattan. But, he added, the chicken wings sure are tasty.

"I never said it was really bad," Emery said Friday, a day after Ottawa beat the Sabres in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals. "I just said there were more things to do on a day off in Manhattan."

Tell that to Western New Yorkers, who took Emery's comments -- "There's not a lot to do on days off," he was quoted as saying -- as a slap in the face.

Buffalonians are already touchy after former Buffalo Bills running back Willis McGahee complained in January that there was nothing to do in town. McGahee was traded to Baltimore in March.

Emery was booed incessantly in Game 1 and particularly jeered with chants of "Emery! Emery!" after each of Buffalo's two goals in the Sabres' 5-2 loss.

"I get a kick out of it," said Emery, who stopped 18 shots to improve to 9-2 this postseason. "If they're chanting your name, it's pretty easy to stay motivated."

In an attempt to make peace, the Niagara Tourism and Convention Corp. was preparing to send Emery a gift basket including information of what the region has to offer and a bottle of locally produced wine.

The tourism group also welcomed Emery back to Buffalo "after the Stanley Cup champion has been crowned" -- whoever that may be -- with the promise of treating the goalie to a VIP tour, including accommodations.

Emery's comments were somewhat surprising considering he grew up in Hamilton, Ontario, a 45-minute drive from Buffalo.

Emery said he hasn't received the gift package yet, adding with a wink, "I'd be nervous opening anything that people send me from here."


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press