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With Shane Pinto still unsigned, it seems Pierre Dorion is working around the clock to find a solution. Insiders have noted that the Sens have been active in trade talks, likely trying to clear cap space. But while Dorion looks to move someone out, the front office brings more in as Ben Sexton joined the NHL coaching staff. Most excitingly, we are only days away from watching Sens hockey again as the rookie camp kicks off in Buffalo.
Sens Trade Market Activity
The 32 Thoughts Podcast released an episode this past Friday, September 8th, where they discussed where trade talk was at in the NHL. Elliot Friedman stated the following:
“Some of the things I’m hearing about a little bit, one is Ottawa. You know they’ve got to get Shane Pinto signed, and they have not got enough room there.” – Elliot Friedman 32 Thoughts The Podcast
This news is not exactly surprising for Sens fans, but it is nice to hear that there is a sense of urgency about figuring out how to get Pinto signed. With every passing day, it feels as though there is more pressure to find a solution to the Pinto saga. Hopefully, Pierre Dorion can find a way to make a deal that will open up enough cap space to sign the 3rd line centre.
These notes from Friedman make me more confident that Mathieu Joseph’s days as a Senator are likely over. Given his current contract, he still seems like the most likely individual to be shipped out. Friedman did not mention Joseph’s name as trade bait, but he fits the criteria. Hopefully, the sweetener added in a Joseph trade isn’t too substantial to the organization. But given the Sens’ lack of leverage, Joseph coming off a down season, and the term remaining on the contract, things seem bleak.
More Changes To The Hockey Ops Department
The Senators have also made some moves in their front office as Ben Sexton has been promoted to an Assistant Coach with the Ottawa Senators. The team is very familiar with Ben, formerly an assistant coach in Belleville from 2020/2021 to 2022/2023. Sexton also wore an ‘A’ for the Belleville Senators in the 17/18 and 18/19 seasons. He suited up for two games in his NHL career, both with Ottawa.
What Sexton’s role entails for the team is yet to be seen. Some have speculated that he may sit in the press box to have a different perspective than the rest of the coaching staff every game. For now, we know he will join Bob Jones and Davis Payne as the third assistant coach.
Replacing Ben Sexton in Belleville will be former Kitchener Rangers coach, Chris Dennis. Although most formerly with the OHL Rangers, Dennis has experience in the NHL as an assistant coach/video coach for the Toronto Maple Leafs. He was also an assistant coach in the AHL with the Chicago Wolves, an associate coach for the Barrie Colts, and coach of the York University Lions.
Sens Get Ready For Rookie Showcase In Buffalo
The waiting is nearly over for the return of Sens hockey with the rookie showcase set to begin this upcoming Friday. The Sens will play three games in Buffalo over the weekend. These games will be against the New Jersey Devils on Friday, September 15th at noon, the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday, September 16th at noon, and the Montreal Canadiens on Monday, September 18th at 1:30 P.M. EST.
While we still don’t know the exact roster for the Sens, Bruce Garrioch has confirmed that prospects Ridly Greig, Tyler Boucher, Tyler Kleven, and Leevi Merilainen will be suiting up. I would expect a full roster to be released from the team shortly, with the puck drop only a couple of days away. While I thought prospects like Ridly Greig and Tyler Kleven had graduated from this tournament, hopefully, they will dominate on most of their shifts.
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