Ottawa Senators General Manager Bryan Murray took some time this afternoon to provide a few updates as the opening of free agency draws closer. The team announced earlier today that they had agreed to terms with Chris Wideman on a one-year, two-way contract ($600,000 in the NHL and $400,000 in the AHL).
Murray on agreeing to terms with Wideman:
Well he was an All-Star defenceman in the American Hockey League. He's a skilled, smaller-type defenceman that brings offence and quickness and he's a real compliment to getting the puck going out of your own end which helps the forwards a great deal in creating offence from the blueline. We're very happy to get Chris signed. We think he has a chance to play a number of games with us this year. Obviously, trading Eric Gryba opened the door for this signing to take place. Chris just wanted to see a light at the end of the tunnel as far as the opportunity to play in Ottawa.
On negotiating with the team's impending free agents:
We've talked to Erik Condra one more time to see where we might be. They've suggested that they'll come back to us in the next day or so and give us an idea what the contract might look like. The two RFAs, Hoffman and Chiasson, we're still negotiating and talking but it does look more and more like we'll be going to arbitration with them.
On if he expects to be busy when free agency opens on July 1st:
We'll wait and see. We'll make a few calls and talk to a number of agents I'm sure but based on the lineup and where we fit with our budget right now we're in pretty good shape and there's not likely going to be much happening on July 1st.