With the ending of development camp and the beginning of training camp less than two months away, this is a great time for a look into the prospects the Senators have in their system. Ever since Bryan Murray was put in charge of this team, the Sens have a history of drafting good talent. In the past couple years, Ottawa was actually ranked in the top three in terms of prospects but due the some trades and prospects graduating to the big club, they are no longer in the top three but do find themselves with some good players not at the NHL level.
This month we will look into the Senators organizational depth and have a look at some of their prospects. Before looking at individual prospects, it is always good to look into who might be able to have an impact next year at the NHL level and who might be able to to step up in the American Hockey League.
- Jared: I have long been a fan of Shane Prince, having watched him for 2 and a half seasons in Ottawa and seeing the improvement he made in that time, I think he deserves to get a shot, and could probably have as much success or more than the likes of Jean-Gabriel Pageau or Mark Stone.
- Phil: With the departure of Daniel Alfredsson and Jakob Silfverberg, the Sens are a little thin at Right Wing. that leaves the door open to few players. Because Ottawa has a lack of prospects in that position that really leaves that spot open for Mark Stone. He might not have developed as fast has many Sens fans had hoped after his performance at the World juniors, but he has developed a better two way game and slightly better foot speed. Stone really made some strides in his game later on in the season in Binghamton as the coach, Luke Richardson, leaned a little harder on the 21 year old winger.
- Jared: Cody Ceci is a player who has tremendous upside and is a year or two away from being an NHL regular, especially under the tutelage of Luke Richardson and what he did with the Binghamton Senators roster in his first year as a professional head coach.
- Phil: Matt Puempel was one of three players the Senators drafted in the first round that year, along with Mika Zibanejad(NHL) and Stefan Noesen (Traded in the Bobby Ryan deal). Puempel has great skill and has always been a point per game player in the OHL with a junior career of 195 games and 213 points. At the age of 20, he is ready to begin his pro career and make the step to the American Hockey League. He has always been a very talented player with a great shot and great vision and should be a welcome addition to the top 6 in Binghamton. the only knock on him is the fact that he has a history with injuries and he along with Sens fans are hoping that is behind him.
- For those of you know don’t know Jarrod Maidens, let me introduce you. He was drafted 4th overall in the OHL by the Owen Sound Attack. Once he started his junior career, Jarrod had such promise that many scouts had him penciled in the top 10 of the NHL draft. At 17 years old, he was becoming a force in the OHL but one night in Barrie in 2011 he was skating with the puck and lost an edge, was headed towards the boards and a Colts player couldn’t stop fast enough and crashed into Maidens head. He finished the game and woke up the next morning with all the classic signs of a concussion. Jarrod hasn’t played a game since November 30th 2011, but he is on his way to return to the OHL next year. The Sens took the risk and drafted the potential first rounder in the third round 82nd overall in the 2012 NHL draft. Maidens has a ton of potential and that is why the Sens took the risk and have been working with the young center since he was drafted. He is a big body player for his age and possesses great foot speed and good offensive potential. He is definitely a Senators project but if he can put the injury behind him and keep developing, this could turn out to be a great pick for Ottawa due to his great potential upside.
We will be looking into the depth in the Ottawa Senators prospects in the coming month, in all positions. Keep an eye out as this will be a 4 part article, Next up will be looking into the goaltenders!