New Sen knows it's just a start

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 9:15 AM ET

Some dreams came true for the newest Ottawa Senators yesterday.

But for rookie winger Brandon Bochenski, the dream coming true is not an end, but a wake-up call.

"Nothing really changes for me. I'm a young player and I've got to earn my spot every time I play," said the 23-year-old, the talk of the Senators' training camp as he tied linemate Dany Heatley for the team lead in goals with six in the pre-season.

"All I can say is I earned a spot for opening night and we go from there. I'm excited and ready to go. Every kid dreams of this."

Bochenski will start his NHL career tomorrow night in Toronto against the Maple Leafs playing on the Senators' top scoring line along side Heatley and centre Jason Spezza. The line combined for 41 points in seven exhibition games.

"When you come to camp I always say there is one surprise and one disappointment. Bochenski is the biggest surprise," said Senators GM John Muckler. "I didn't know how he would react to playing at the major league level, but he's off to a great start and he deserves a chance to prove himself."

Rookie winger Brian McGrattan, kept for his willingness to play a physical role, will be thrown right into his first Battle of Ontario tomorrow night.

"I'm going to go out and play physical and be there for my teammates," said McGrattan.

Freshman centre Chris Kelly, the captain of the Senators' Binghamton farm club last year, earned the last forward spot over veteran Denis Hamel on the strength of his ability to win faceoffs and kill penalties.

Muckler sees a lot of potential in defenceman Andrej Meszaros, 19, who earned the sixth defenceman spot.

"He's a very energetic kid. Coming out of junior, he showed a lot of poise," said Muckler.

"He's got great vision for a kid and he's only going to get better. He hasn't begun to touch his potential."


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