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Converting Chances Into Goals

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers
(AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)
By Dave Joseph for

OTTAWA – Rostislav Olesz feels he’s close.

The Panther winger has been held without a goal in the first five games of the season, but he feels he’s quite capable of changing that statistic and changing it quick.

“The last five games, I haven’t scored but I’ve had chances,” said Olesz after participating in an optional skate Wednesday morning at Carleton University in preparation for tonight’s game against the Senators.

The line of Olesz, Radek Dvorak and Gregory Campbell has provided quite a bit of energy for the Panthers over the past several games and also quite a few chances. Unfortunately, their play hasn’t shown up just yet on the score sheet.

“I think playing on the line with Radek and (Campbell)…we’ve created a lot of scoring chances but we haven’t finished,” Olesz said. “But we are close. I’m hoping we score tonight. It doesn’t matter who scores, we just want to win this game.”

Olesz spent the preseason and first two games of the season with Nathan Horton and Cory Stillman. Coach Peter DeBoer said he moved Olesz because “we’re trying different things to get things going.”

“It’s not that Rusty was playing poorly,” DeBoer said. “The line just didn’t seem to have any chemistry or didn’t seem to for a couple games there so we made the change. Rusty just has to keep battling.”


Craig Anderson in goal tonight for the Panthers. Martin Gerber gets the start for Ottawa… Senators’ coach Craig Hartsburg, upset with the play of his team, is expected to shake up his forward pairings tonight. Jason Spezza is expected to start alongside Nick Foligno and Jesse Winchester while Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley will have Mike Fisher… The Senators are 27th in the league in shots allowed (33.2), the Panthers 22nd (31.2)… DeBoer reiterated Wednesday morning his hope the Panthers will get to the net for rebounds tonight and create more traffic in front of the goal after working on that part of the game Tuesday. “We’ll see if we can transfer it to the game tonight,” he said…
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