Ottawa Senators supporters probably wish they weren’t compelled to pay so much attention to the team’s prospects right now.
Yet, as 2018 cranks up, questions surrounding the floundering Sens have more to do with which veterans they might move or whether or not their 2018 first-rounder — conditionally sent to Colorado in the Matt Duchene deal — will wind up being so high that they’ll use it and send the Avs their (completely unprotected) 2019 pick instead.
If there’s a ray of sunshine in this dreary season, though, it’s that future Senator Drake Batherson wound up being Canada’s World Junior Championship breakout star one year after Thomas Chabot — now taking a regular shift on the Sens blue line — was named MVP of the tournament. Here, then, is a peak at Batherson and a bunch of other notable youngers in the Ottawa pipeline.
REASON FOR OPTIMISM
Colin White, 20, C
Drafted: First round, 21st overall, 2015
Season to date: 27GP | 5G | 8A | 13P | -15
Pour one out for White, because this is likely his last appearance on a prospect list. The American was called up to the big club last week and you have to wonder if he’ll ever play a game below the NHL level again. White’s AHL stats are underwhelming, but don’t forget a broken wrist delayed his debut until November and the Baby Sens have scuffled to a 14-20-3 record. The former Boston College kid is going to be just fine.
AHL BELLEVILLE SENATORS
Gabriel Gagne, 21, RW
Drafted: Second round, 36th overall, 2015
Season to date: 36GP | 12G | 3A | 15P | -7
Only four teams have scored fewer goals than Belleville this year, so don’t expect many eye-popping stats here. With that in mind, the team-leading 12 goals put up by Gabriel Gagne has to register as a positive development. The 6-foot-5 right winger logged some ECHL time last season as a first-year pro, so there’s no doubt he’s trending in the right direction.
Gagne provided what may prove to be the highlight of the Sens’ first season in Belleville when he blasted the shootout winner in the team’s home-opener (he also leads the squad with three shootout markers this year).
Christian Jaros, 21, D
Drafted: Fifth round, 139th overall, 2015
Season to date: 25GP | 2G | 7A | 9P | -5
This is the Slovakian’s first season in North America and he’s acquitting himself just fine. Jaros, who had a cup of coffee in Ottawa earlier this year, is actually playing at almost a 30-point pace: Not bad for a rookie defenceman in a 76-game season. Both his goals have come via the power play, where he boasts a powerful right-hand shot, and he’s fired more pucks on goal than any other Belleville defenceman despite missing a dozen games. The 6-foot-3 Jaros is also more than happy to mix it up physically.
Andreas Englund, 21, D
Drafted: Second Round, 40th overall, 2014
Season to date: 36GP | 0G | 5A | 5P | -4
A perpetual winner of Ottawa’s least-glamourous prospect award, Englund …read more
Source:: Sportsnet.ca – Sports news