Ottawa Senators: The Sens Sign Defenceman Johnny Oduya

NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 17: Johnny Oduya
NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 17: Johnny Oduya /

The Ottawa Senators have signed Johnny Oduya to a one year contract. In doing so they have added some much needed depth to their blueline.

The news comes out fairly late into free agency as few free agents are left to sign. Oduya comes in on a one million dollar contract. Although the contract does have up to 1.25 million in potential bonuses. Oduya comes to the Ottawa Senators as a much needed veteran defenceman.

A Veteran Presence

Scoring just 9 points in 52 games last season Oduya is not known for his offensive capabilities. However, he was a part of two championships with the Chicago Blackhawks. Able to play a shutdown role is just what the Sens needed. He appears to be a clear replacement for Methot. Although his play has regressed in recent years he’s a known quantity. The same cannot be said for some of the younger players such as Claesson and Chabot.


Oduya coming in likely means he will be in rotation with Claesson and Chabot on the left side. I have trouble believing that the Sens would bring in Oduya and not play him, even if it is just a one year contract. This very likely could mean that Harpur and Borowiecki could start the year in the AHL barring injuries.

The introduction of Oduya is partially to send a message to both Claesson and Chabot. A spot in the lineup will not just be given to them. Just because Methot is gone does not mean they get those new spots be default. Instead they will have to prove that they are the best option and not the only option. Both are still very young and haven’t played pro hockey for that long. They could need time in the AHL, especially Chabot. Although it’s expected that Chabot could be a star, the transition to pro hockey is difficult, especially for defenceman. It often takes longer for them to adapt to the pro game. Adding Oduya gives the Ottawa Senators some wiggle room should either falter.

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Final Thoughts

The addition of Oduya is an important one for the Ottawa Senators. It adds a stable veteran presence to the blueline that was lost with Methot. Additionally, it sends a message to the younger players that they have to earn their spot. Competitiveness can only lead to good things for the Sens.