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The newest Senators prospect to keep an eye on is Donovan Sebrango who recently came over in the Alex DeBrincat trade. Sebrango is a player that many Sens fans are unfamiliar with, but he brings some underrated value to the Senators organization. In this article, I will discuss why Sebrango does have some solid NHL potential, and why I believe he has a future on the Sens blue line.
If you would like to see my instant analysis of Sebrango being brought to Ottawa, check out this article.
2022/2023 Season Stats
Donovan Sebrango split his season between the Grand Rapids Griffins (AHL) and the Toledo Walleye (ECHL). As a 21-year-old defender, he was able to put up 7 points in 39 AHL games, and 12 points in 23 ECHL games. These numbers may not jump off the page, but Sebrango is not an offensive defender. His game is built around playing a solid 2-way game with an emphasis on defence.
Donovan Sebrango was a very good player at the junior hockey level. He spent his time in the OHL with the Kitchener Rangers, where he excelled. Sebrango was very good at shutting down opponents, and he used this ability to earn a roster spot on Team Canada’s 2022 World Junior Team. Sebrango wore an “A” for Canada in this tournament and put up 2 assists in 7 games.
He played an important role in shutting down top-line opponents on the other team. With his contributions, Canada would go on to win the gold medal.
Donovan Sebrango was one of the many prospects who had the misfortune of missing out on some of their junior hockey seasons. Due to league rules, Sebrango was forced to play overseas with HK Levice and in the AHL with Grand Rapids in his D+1 season. This was a huge lifestyle change for many prospects including Sebrango who had to completely uproot their hockey development path.
While Sebrango’s results didn’t jump off the page in the AHL, they were respectable for a teenage player. And once again, Sebrango is a guy who focuses more on the defensive side of the puck. This extra pro experience could pay dividends for Sebrango as he now has a solid understanding of what it takes to play against men at the pro level. While his development path isn’t traditional, it doesn’t mean that it won’t be effective.
What Should Be Expected From Donovan Sebrango This Season
Sebrango is expected to play next season with the Belleville Senators. As fans, we should be looking for him to take the next step and become a high-end defensive defenceman in the AHL. Sebrango is still a very young prospect, and playing in the AHL as a young defenceman is not easy. With multiple years of pro experience, however, I am expecting a big year from him.
I will be looking for Donovan Sebrango to step into the Belleville Sens top 4. I won’t be expecting a huge point total from him, but I do hope that he will be able to play an effective shut-down game. I think a pairing of Sebrango/Thomson or Guenette would be very solid for the Sens.
What Could Sebrango Be With The Ottawa Senators
Donovan Sebrango has the potential to be a complimentary second or third-pairing defenceman at the NHL level. With his play style, he will be a versatile option in the lineup if he reaches his potential. He is what the Senators need in their lackluster prospect pipeline as well. While they have a young, solid top 4 defence, eventually, players will have to come in to play a depth role on a cheap contract.
At just 21 years old, Sebrango still has plenty of time to become an effective NHL player. Sebrango has been generally overlooked by Sens fans because his numbers do not jump off the page, and he spent some time in the ECHL. What is often disregarded is how young of a player Sebrango is, and how early he was forced out of playing junior hockey.
Look at players like Helge Grans or Ryan O’Rourke who were both second-round picks in the 2020 draft. Both have similar numbers to Sebrango in the AHL and are regarded as solid NHL prospects.
Donovan Sebrango is going to impress a lot of Sens fans this season, and I am very excited to see what he will become in the future.
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