The Ottawa Senators may have lost one of their defenseman as Vasterviks IK announced (translation required) they have signed defenseman Andreas Englund, who is expected to hit restricted free agency on Oct. 9. The Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch reports that the deal has an out-clause in which he can return to the Senators, but only if the team gives him a qualifying offer next month, which is no certainty. The wording on the announcement also suggests the Allsvenskan team hopes to keep him around permanently.
“24-year-old Andreas Englund played in (Ottawa) last season but his contract has now expired so he is now a free agent,” according to the press release.
Englund did manage to play a career high in games played in the NHL this season. He appeared in 24 games for the Senators, who drafted the blueliner in the second round back in 2014. However, the blueliner was also placed on waivers on multiple occasions throughout the year and didn’t see much time on the ice in Ottawa regardless. Englund averaged just 10:54 of ATOI and due to his lack of offensive ability, many believe that he doesn’t have the ability to win himself a permanent spot as a top-six defenseman in the NHL. That, along with a number of new faces on Ottawa’s defense this year, including a permanent role for Erik Brannstrom, a healthy Christian Wolanin and the overseas signing of Artem Zub, there may not be a place in the NHL for Englund, leaving many questions whether the team will hand him a qualifying offer.
Englund has played in the Allvenskan before when he played for Djurgardens Stokholm squad and then followed that year up with two years in the SHL before coming over to North America. He does have some size at 6-foot-4, but lacks significant offensive skill as he managed just three assists in 24 NHL games and went scoreless in 22 AHL games and his career high in AHL scoring has been 14 points (back in 2018-19).