Bryan Murray has been relatively inactive on the free agent front, signing Guillaume Latendress and Mike Lundin to relatively small contracts.
In the wake of the Shea Weber offer sheet, I looked at the list of remaining Restricted Free Agents and picked out 7 players that I wouldn’t mind seeing in a Senators uniform. There is no doubt most of them would be matched, but it would be an exciting time to see Murray pushing the envelope and shaking things up. Here are the Magnificent 7, in reverse order to how I would like to see them:
7. Tyler Ennis, BUF – A top 6 forward who has the potential for 60-70 points in a top 6 role. Diminutive but talented.
6. Jonathan Blum, NSH – Emerging talent was underappreciated in Nashville, could be a top 4 player this year, wherever he plays.
5. John Carlson, WSH – A mobile, gambling style defenseman who now anchors the Capitals top pair. Would step into a top 4 role in Ottawa, and would complement Erik Karlsson’s style and provide a crazy-good power play. A Karlsson-Carlson combo would wreak havoc on Dean Brown as well!
4. Jamie Benn, DAL – A power forward who is coming into his own. On Jason Spezza’s wing he would flourish and he would provide the physical presence to go with the skill that is currently missing in the Sens lineup.
3. Michael Del Zotto, NYR – Not only would you pry a top 4 defenseman from a conference rival, but strengthen your own defensive corps. Del Zotto provides a solid 2-way presence who is nowhere near his prime yet.
2. PK Subban, MTL – I don’t know if there is room for Subban and Karlsson on the same blue line, but it would be nothing if not an adventure. Also, even more than Del Zotto, would create animosity with a division rival. You might not like him as a Hab, but would quickly become a fan favorite in Ottawa.
1. Evander Kane, WPG – One of the top young power forwards in the league. Like Benn, would be great on Spezza’s wing and could be a 40 goal-80 point guy in that role.
With the young prospects in the system, the Senators are in good shape for the future. However, you don’t want to rush them into the spotlight, and adding one of these RFAs would solidify the lineup, and in the case of the defensemen would shore up a potential weakness.
Murray has loads of cap space to spare, and would make the dog days of summer a whole lot more exciting should he make an offer to one of these young studs.