The Senators prized free-agent signing struggled to find his footing
Signed to a 3-year $15 million contract in the offseason, Evgenii Dadonov was thought to be an ideal complimentary piece to the young guns as the Senators near the end of their rebuild. It wasn’t a great season for the 32-year-old Russian sniper and I think both the player and the team would admit that.
However, Dadonov was able to create some great memories that won’t soon be forgotten among Senators fans, especially the role he played in the team’s 6-5 come from behind overtime victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs after facing a 5-1 deficit just prior to the start of the 3rd period. The 15 million dollar man delivered, scoring the game-tying goal in the final minutes and then capping off the triumph in the extra frame.
55GP, 13G-7A-20P, 89 shots, 38 hits, 15:35 TOI/GP
82-game pace: 19G-10A-29P, 133 shots, 57 hits,
Dadonov’s production left plenty to be desired as he just wasn’t able to find any semblance of consistency during the season. The veteran winger was expected to provide a significant boost to a Senators power-play that has struggled greatly over the past few seasons, but that never materialized as he was a non-factor all season on the man advantage with just one power-play assist. This is even crazier when you realize that Dadonov spent the first half of the season on the top power-play unit and still had that scarce production.
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Since returning to North America in the 2017-18 season, Dadonov would proceed to score 25+ goals in each of the next three seasons and he successfully cemented himself as a consistent top-six scoring winger in the NHL. That same consistency wasn’t carried over to Ottawa as the talented forward limped to the finish line with just two goals in his final 18 games and just 13 goals in total.
Let’s see how Dadonov fared analytically compared to his teammates:
- 51.96 CF% (2nd)
- 26.1 xGF (6th)
- 50.06 xGF% (5th)
- 51.69 HDCF% (7th)
The Senators’ top free-agent acquisition was surprisingly a little bit of an analytics darling as his lines were able to drive play at a high level. His 51.96 Corsi-for percentage was second to only Colin White, who spent most of the season playing with the former Florida Panther.
EVGENII DADONOVRW, Ottawa Senators
With his one power-play point and underwhelming 13 goals, this grade was never going to reflect kindly on Dadonov, but some aspects of his game were good enough to prevent his grade from going any lower.
Strong analytics, plus his near 20-goal pace saved this season from being a complete disaster, but more should be expected of Dadonov in his second year
All analytics via Natural Stat Trick