In a recent piece, I explored the idea of an All-Time Ottawa Senators Team, hitting the forwards. Today I’ll be looking at defense and goaltending. Like yesterday’s piece, tenure is not the most important factor so you might see some newer names.
Marc Methot – Erik Karlsson
Easily the best pairing in franchise history, you can’t go wrong with this duo. Marc Methot is the greatest defensive defenseman this team has ever seen and was able to lay people out with his iconic hip-check. Paired with him I have Erik Karlsson, the greatest defenseman in team history and one of the best defensemen in all NHL history. Karlsson is third all-time in points for the franchise with 518 (126g, 392a) and won two Norris Trophies while with the Sens.
Thomas Chabot – Chris Phillips
The team’s current number-one defenceman, and longest-tenured player, Thomas Chabot is an easy addition to this list. Chabot is top 3 greatest defensemen the team has ever seen in my opinion (I know that’s a hot take) and he’s been great with the Sens. Despite a bit of a down year I’m sure he’s going to continue turning heads on the powerplay. On his right side, I have Chris Phillips. Phillips was a great defensive defenseman while in the NHL. He’s the franchise leader in games played with 1179. Phillips was the second player to have his number retired.
Zdeno Chara – Wade Redden
I have Zdeno Chara on this list because you can’t ignore the future Hall of Famer and tallest player in NHL history. Chara’s got a lot more than just his size that made him such a great player, he was the perfect two-way defenseman who was able to shut down pretty much everyone while also having the hardest slapshot ever recorded that would scare away just about anyone. Chara’s easily a Hall of Famer once he’s officially eligible. You can’t have this list without including Wade Redden, the team’s first-ever elite offensive defenseman. Redden is fourth in team history in games played, and fifth in points with 410. Redden is the first player to be inducted into the team’s Ring of Honor
I’m a little too young to have many memories of Anton Volchenkov but I have heard so many stories about his deadly body checks and great defensive awareness. Truly one of the better d-men in franchise history, he was a great player. For the younger fan like me who were not around when he was at his best, he played very similarly to Tyler Kleven.
Dominik Hasek, Craig Anderson
I know that this part of the list might be a little controversial as Dominik Hasek only played in 43 games with the Ottawa Senators, but that’s partly why I made it clear that tenure was not a deal-breaker in this series. This series looks at the skill and impact alone the player had. Hasek is arguably the greatest goaltender of all time, so you cannot omit him here. As the team’s “backup,” I have Craig Anderson. Based more on tenure, Andy is easily the greatest goaltender in franchise history, as he holds pretty much every single franchise record for goaltending.
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The Ottawa Senators have seen lots of phenomenal defensemen, and limiting myself to 7 dmen was quite a challenge. I’m sure I missed a lot of all-time franchise greats, tell me who I missed as the whole point of this is to spark conversation.