He may not be playing with Dany Heatley and Jason Spezza in his return visit to the NHL, but that's not stopping Brandon Bochenski from putting up points.
When Martin Havlat went down with a shoulder injury, the Senators had two options; call up Patrick Eaves or Bochenski. Seeing as Bochenski had only been up once, while Eaves had made three appearances, the Sens felt Bochenski deserved a second opportunity after putting up 17 points in 14 games with Binghamton of the AHL.
After being shut down in his first game back (the entire team was blanked in a 3-0 shutout loss to the Bruins), the 23-year-old proceeded to score four goals and add two assists his next two games.
Not too shabby, considering his linemates are Bryan Smolinski and Vaclav Varada. But what's even more impressive is he did it while averaging less than 12 minutes per game.
Don't expect this kind of production to continue in the immediate future - nobody can keep up such a pace with that kind of ice time and offensively sub-par linemates - but Bochenski does have a bright future.
The Sens are doing the right thing by bringing him along slowly, like they did with Spezza.
In two years, Bochenski will be a 70-point player.
Under the radar: The Coyotes Jamie Lundmark has six points in his last six games. Lundmark, who has been a scratch 11 times this season, found himself back in the lineup when Petr Nedved suffered a concussion and took advantage. Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky, is being smart by bringing him along slowly (see Bochenski), something the Rangers, Lundmark's former team, never didÂ…
Patrick Marleau is baskingÂ…erÂ…out ofÂ…the spotlight. Since Joe Thornton's arrival in San Jose, Marleau has nine points in three games. He was always meant to be the No. 2 in town and never looked comfortable as a go-to guy. Now watch him be the 90-point player he can be. I don't think he would have ever hit that mark as the headliner.
Injuries, from a fantasy pool perspective: Now that Havlat's shoulder surgery is keeping him out of the lineup until the playoffs, Bochenski has every opportunity to stay in the NHL for the rest of the yearÂ…Philadelphia's Keith Primeau is finally showing improvement on his concussion symptoms. He still won't be back in 2005 thoughÂ…Speaking of Philly, Joni Pitkanen and Eric Desjardins are out of the lineup for up to two months. This means the slumping Kim Johnsson HAS to be the go-to guy on the blueline for the power play. He's worth taking a Â“FlyerÂ” onÂ…Likely back this weekend: Wade Redden of Ottawa and Rick Nash of Columbus. Keep an eye on the injury reports to be sureÂ…Petr Cajanek's groin injury means more ice time, and likely more points, for Mike Sillinger. This fact was evident in his three-point performance on Thursday against Tampa.
Farm Report: Chicago prospect Troy Brouwer is currently leading the WHL in scoring with 50 points in 31 games for Moose Jaw. The 20-year-old was a seventh round pick (214th overall) in 2004, but already has more points this season than either of his first two, quickly moving him onto the Blackhawks' radar screen. He has a future as a power forward in the NHL, just give him three or four years.
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