by Todd Anderson
Reaching 50 goals in each of his first two campaigns since joining the Ottawa Senators is definitely an objective for forward Dany Heatley. After becoming the first Senator in team history to pot 50 last season, Heatley has 15 games to score nine goals and reach that mark again this year.
"It's a great number to achieve," says Heatley, who has scored nine goals in the last eight games. "I'm close right now but I'm going to have to score a little bit during these last 15 games to get there. I'm trying to shoot as much as I can and hope they go in for goals."
With 41 tallies this season, Heatley is second in the NHL behind Tampa Bay Lightning forward Vincent Lecavalier who has 43.
Heading into a home-and-home series with the Toronto Maple Leafs tomorrow at Scotiabank Place, Heatley is looking forward to increasing his totals against the Ontario rival. Over the last two seasons, Heatley has 13 goals and 26 points in 14 games against Toronto.
"I always enjoy playing them and being a part of the rivalry," the winger says. "It's always fun to play against Toronto and Montreal. They're big games and the fans get up for them."
Heatley, who is currently on a 12-game point-scoring streak, might have his buddy Jason Spezza back on his line tomorrow against the Leafs. Spezza missed yesterday's game against the Pittsburgh Penguins with a sore back.
"He's been playing great," Heatley says of Spezza, his regular centre. "He's on an 11-gamer (Spezza had points in 11 straight games before the injury) right now. He's playing real well and skating real well. I hope he can come back and help us."
Spezza says he is feeling better after two days of treatment.
"It's spasms," he said this morning. "It's getting better and I'm hoping (to return) tomorrow. It's probably a game-time decision, a day-to-day thing. My back has been feeling great this season. This is totally different from (the back injury) last year."