Ladies and Gentlemen, you remember Stephane Da Costa, right? Remember the French-born player that the Senators won a bidding war for in 2011 and lured the college free agent to sign with the Senators out of Merrimack College?
Well, believe it or not, he is still in the organization. Judging by the lineups that so many people pencil in (myself included), Da Costa is a forgotten man. Perhaps it is because centre is the only position he can really play and the Senators are overstocked with centres. Perhaps it is because he appears to be the next Peter Regin, a guy with the skills but unable to seize the opportunity when it presents itself.
Da Costa hasn’t done himself any favors with the organization, in terms of reporting to camp not in the best shape and deciding not to attend the club’s rookie camp in 2011.
It will be interesting to see what his training camp is like this time around, as he is in his second consecutive 1 year, 2-way contract. This is likely his last chance to prove himself to the Ottawa brass that he is worth keeping in the organization.
He played well in Binghamton last season (36 points in 46 games), but had a very unmemorable 1 goal and 1 assist in 9 games with the Senators. I had to look twice to make sure he had even played in Ottawa last year, that’s how much of an impact he had.
With the emergence of Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Da Costa seems like the forgotten man in the Senators organization, knocked down another notch on the depth chart, and on a two-way contract he will have to play his way onto the team. Nothing will be handed to him.
If he can’t make his way in Ottawa this season, he will become just another free-agent flameout, likely ticketed for the Swiss league in the future. Hopefully he has taken disappointment of the last two seasons in a positive light and comes to camp in shape with a new attitude and makes the Senators decisions up the middle even that much more difficult than they already will be.