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A look at the Sens defense/Max Domi in a Sens uniform?

August 4, 2021, 11:07 AM ET [73 Comments]
Kevin Francis
Ottawa Senators Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
After having a look at the Sens forwards a few days ago in this spot, today I wanted to take a look at the Ottawa Senators defense. With Sens GM Pierre Dorion acquiring Nick Holden from Vegas and signing free agent defenseman Michael Del Zotto, Ottawa now has a logjam on defense. One has to wonder if a defenseman is traded prior to training camp, possibly as part of a package to get a center or right winger as they lack either experience or depth at those two positions.

When looking at the left side on defense you have Thomas Chabot, Victor Mette and Erik Brannstrom. On the right side, you have Nikita Zaitsev, Artum Zub, Josh Brown and Jacob Bernard-Docker, with many seeing JBD playing in the AHL this coming season. That gives Ottawa 9 NHL defensemen, oh and lets not forget that 2020 first round draft pick, Jake Sanderson should be a NHL regular when he finishes his sophomore season at the University of North Dakota.

This is where it gets interesting. Both Del Zotto and Holden play both sides, even though they are natural left side defensemen. Listening to Del Zotto on TSN 1200 yesterday on the afternoon drive show, it’s very clear that he is ready to play the right side after his conversations with head coach DJ Smith.

With that being said, it really sounds like Brannstrom could be the trade bait as part of acquiring a center or right winger. After seeing Mette get far more minutes than Brannstrom and playing in the top 4 of the defense over the last 10 games of the season, DJ Smith made it very clear by his handling of Brannstrom that he doesn’t play the way he would like to see. We all know what happened to Dadonov by the end season, in the doghouse of Smith, he got traded! Personally I see Brannstrom on a fast path to continuing his NHL career with another team, either before the season begins as during the season.

As for how the defensive pairings work out, it really sounds like the coaching staff will be trying numerous combos to see what players have the chemistry they are looking for, according to Del Zotto on the radio yesterday.

On another note, I had an NHL executive that I communicate with quite often mention to me if Ottawa might be interested in Max Domi of the Columbus Blue Jackets. He has one year left on his deal(5.3 million) and at 26 years of age he will be playing hard for a new contract when he becomes a UFA at the end of the upcoming season. Columbus wants to move him and his stock is extremely low so it wouldn’t take more than a mid round draft pick to acquire him. Ottawa has made a few trades over the years with Columbus, why not again? Domi played a fair amount of center in Montreal and has played the wing alot too. His defensive awareness and faceoff ability have long been his issues but if you are Pierre Dorion, you wouldn’t be giving up any of your top prospects. If the move doesn’t work out, maybe by the trade deadline Shane Pinto would’ve had enough time in the AHL that he could be called up on a permanent basis and you move Domi at the deadline for a draft pick. Like they say, buy low and in this case Ottawa would be buying low! Thoughts Sens fans?
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