When the Ottawa Senators traded the seventh-overall pick at the 2021 draft along with two other picks to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Alex DeBrincat, many assumed that the Senators were making the trade with the idea of signing DeBrincat to a long-term extension. While that’s definitely Ottawa’s preferred option with their new winger, it seems DeBrincat hasn’t made a firm choice on whether to commit to the Senators long-term just yet.
As reported by Ian Mendes of The Athletic, DeBrincat “isn’t ready” to sign a long-term deal in Ottawa at this point, although he did say that he’s “open” to the possibility of it. (subscription link) DeBrincat will be eligible to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2024, and without a long-term deal in place DeBrincat could accept a $9MM minimum qualifying offer this summer, which would take him right to free agency. DeBrincat, who scored 78 points this season, is an extremely talented offensive player and someone who the Senators undoubtedly want to be a cornerstone member of their club. With this development in mind, it will be important to monitor how well DeBrincat fits in his new surroundings in Ottawa because that fit could determine if the Senators get their wish, which is DeBrincat’s signature on a long-term deal.
Now, for some other notes from across the NHL’s Eastern Conference:
- New Jersey Devils defenseman Damon Severson has spent the entirety of his eight-year professional career in New Jersey, but with his contract set to expire at the end of this season, his time in red and black could be coming to an end. Severson told the media today, as relayed by James Nichols of The Fourth Period, that contract talks between him and the Devils have not yet begun. That doesn’t mean that a deal won’t get done between now and next summer, of course, but with the signing of Dougie Hamilton, the recent Jonas Siegenthaler extension, the acquisition of John Marino, and the eventual arrivals of Luke Hughes and Simon Nemec, it’s definitely possible that the Devils don’t see room for Severson long-term in their top-four.
- The Philadelphia Flyers issued a few injury updates today, as reported by NHL.com’s Bill Meltzer. Per the update, both Artem Anisimov and Carter Hart are dealing with lower-body injuries, and Cam Atkinson is dealing with an upper-body ailment. All are officially day-to-day. While these injuries don’t seem likely to have any major impact on Hart or Atkinson, an injury could pose an issue for Anisimov, who is in Flyers camp on a PTO and is battling for a roster spot.