Sens bring in fresh legs

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 3:38 PM ET


 With one stroke of a pen, Ottawa Senators coach Jacques Martin doubled his team's Stanley Cup experience last night.

 Martin tinkered with his lineup for Game 4, inserting defenceman Curtis Leschyshyn for young Anton Volchenkov.

 Leschyshyn and fellow defenceman Greg de Vries are the only members of the Senators who have Cup rings stashed away at home.

 "I am certainly not the answer for the goal-scoring drought," Leschyshyn said with a smile. "I'm excited. It's exactly the time of year you want to be playing."

 Leschyshyn was on the Colorado Avalanche when it won the Cup in 1996; de Vries was with the Avalanche when it captured the mug in 2001.

 Leschyshyn had two goals and six assists in 66 career post-season games before last night.

 Watching the first three games of the Eastern Conference quarter-final against Toronto took a mental toll on the 34-year-old, who played in all 18 Senators playoffs games last spring.

 "It's much more stressful," Leschyshyn said. "You play every shift (in your mind) and after the game you are pretty tired mentally."

 De Vries acknowledged earlier yesterday it has taken some time for him to adjust to a disciplined system enforced by Martin after spending much of the season with the scatter-brained New York Rangers. De Vries had not made a big impact through the first three games of the series.

 "It has been different coming to a new team and trying to jell before the playoffs," said de Vries, who was pursued by the Maple Leafs last summer when he was up for grabs as a free agent.

 Despite being a rarity in the Senators room with his Stanley Cup ring, de Vries hasn't been running around dispensing advice.

 "It always helps to have a guy who has been through it before, but there is a lot of experience in here because these guys came within one game of going to the final last year," de Vries said.

 OPPORTUNITY

 "If I would give any advice, it would be to just not let the opportunity slip away.

 "You don't want to let it get away because you never know when you are going to be back again."


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