Sens won't take Leafs lightly

TERRY KOSHAN

, Last Updated: 7:43 AM ET

Dany Heatley's club has owned the Maple Leafs in the past during the regular season but he expects a barn-burner tonight at Scotiabank Place in Ottawa.

"It should be a good one," the Senators forward said yesterday during a conference call. "I say we get pumped to play them. They always seem to raise their game when they play us, too. But everyone needs points and the race is so tight. Toronto is no different. We will take them like we will anybody else."

The Senators beat the Leafs seven of eight times in 2005-06 and this season has been similar. In five games, the Leafs' only win was on the second night of the regular season, when they surprised a lot of people and beat the Senators 6-0 in the nation's capital.

Heatley was the hottest player in the NHL in January, recording 22 points (11 goals and 11 assists) in 14 games and earning a league-best plus-14.

A SHARP RAZOR

Andrew Raycroft's willingness to speak to the media and do so willingly and candidly has been noted by reporters in Toronto, and one reason might be it's the polar opposite of the approach Ed Belfour used to take. Where Belfour often was perturbed and favoured giving one-word answers, Raycroft usually provides insight and has no trouble shooting the breeze.

"The way I was brought up was you show respect for people and you get respect back," Raycroft said. "I understand you guys have a job to do just like I do. Some days are easier than others, but I understand that I have to answer questions. It is part of my responsibility. I don't look at the media as a bad thing."

SCENE OF THE INJURY

The game tonight marks the return of Leafs defenceman Carlo Colaiacovo to Ottawa. It was in Scotiabank Place on Jan. 23, 2006, that Colaiacovo suffered a concussion, forcing him out of the lineup until Dec. 12.

"Let's hope not," Colaiacovo said with a chuckle when it was pointed out that lightning rarely strikes in the same place twice. "But it's definitely not a concern of mine. I'm not going to worry about what happened in the past."


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