Ottawa Senators general manager Bryan Murray leaves following NHL general managers' meetings in Toronto, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Mark Blinch)

GM Murray, Senators near contract extension


Ottawa Senators GM Bryan Murray bid farewell and wished good luck to his nephew and assistant Tim Murray on Friday after he joined the Buffalo Sabres as their general manager. The elder Murray doesn’t plan on leaving the Senators anytime soon though and it looks like he won’t have to.

Owner Eugene Melnyk is in serious talks with Bryan Murray about a contract extension and an announcement could be coming in the near future, according to Ottawa Citizen.

Murray has dedicated his life to hockey. He has coached in 1,239 NHL games dating back to 1981-82 and ranks ninth on the all-time list with 620 wins. He has also served as the general manager for the Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers, and Anaheim Ducks.

He turned 71 in December, but remains motivated to stay in the NHL.

“It’s a great business to be in,” Murray said. “We think we have a real growing franchise here, with a lot of kids in the program and on the way up, so it would be hard (to leave). There’s no question there’s a time (for retirement), but hopefully this isn’t my time.”

Columbus collapse: Rangers spoil Blue Jackets’ opener

Jarret Stoll, Mats Zuccarello
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For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.

The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.

They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.

It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.

Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)

Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.

This post will be updated if there’s video of that staggering sequence.

Welcome back, Babs: Red Wings chase Bernier

Mike Babcock
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Mike Babcock admitted that there might be a painful transformation as he tries to fix the Toronto Maple Leafs.

His old friends made that abundantly, painfully clear on Friday.

As of this writing, the Detroit Red Wings are up 4-0 on the Buds. Justin Abdelkader just completed a hat trick with James Reimer in net, so the subplot isn’t just about Jonathan Bernier having another tough start.

The big story might just be Detroit’s varied new line of Abdelkader, Dylan Larkin (who scored his first career goal) and Henrik Zetterberg. At the moment, they’ve combined for seven points.

This post will be updated if Detroit’s tribute video to Babcock surfaces.

Really, though, this beating has been about as ugly as this blanket so far.

Here’s video of Abdelkader’s hat trick: