Senators by the Numbers: #4

SUNRISE, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Chris Phillips #4 of the Ottawa Senators skates prior to the game against the Florida Panthers on February 15, 2012 at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

It's time for #4. Over the course of the Senators 20-year history, only #4 and #11 have been worn in every season. #4 has been worn every season but has only been worn by 3 players in that time - one fewer than #11. All 3 played or play defense, all 3 wore or wear an "A" on their jersey.

Brad Shaw D 1992-1993, 1993-1994, 1994-1995

A draft pick of the Detroit Red Wings in 1982, Shaw never played for the organization that drafted him, but did play for the Hartford Whalers, Ottawa Senators, Washington Capitals, and St. Louis Blues during his 11-year NHL career. Shaw's career +/- without his Ottawa totals factored in? -5. With his Ottawa totals factored in? -93.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
1992-93 81 7 34 41 -47 34
1993-94 66 4 19 23 -41 59
1994-85 2 0 0 0 0 0

Sean Hill D 1995-1996, 1996-1997, 1997-1998

Hill's first appearance in this series was in the previous entry on #3. Hill's 13 games with Ottawa in 1997-1998 are the reason Chris Phillips did not start his career with the Sens wearing his customary #4.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
1995-96 80 7 14 21 -26 94
1996-97 5 0 0 0 1 4
1997-98 13 1 1 2 -3 6

Chris Phillips D 1997-1998, 1998-1999, 1999-2000, 2000-2001, 2001-2002, 2002-2003, 2003-2004,

2005-2006, 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2008-2009, 2009-2010, 2010-2011, 2011-2012

Ottawa's gold-standard at #4. While not as dominant as many first-overall picks, Chris has had one of the most successful NHL careers of anyone in his draft class. His 14 years of service is second only to Daniel Alfredsson in club history. While there have been some tough times, Phillips has also provided many memorable moments during his career with the Senators. His OT winner in game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals against the New Jersey Devils in 2003 helped the Sens live to fight another day, even if game 7 broke our hearts. More recently, Phillips scored 2 goals, including the game-winning goal, in his 1,000th NHL game in February, 2012.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
1997-98 72 5 11 16 2 38
1998-99 34 3 3 6 -5 32
1999-00 65 5 14 19 12 39
2000-01 73 2 12 14 8 31
2001-02 63 6 16 22 5 29
2002-03 78 3 16 19 7 71
2003-04 82 7 16 23 15 56
2005-06 69 1 18 19 19 90
2006-07 82 8 18 26 36 80
2007-08 81 5 13 18 15 56
2008-09 82 6 16 22 -14 66
2009-10 82 8 16 24 8 45
2010-11 82 1 8 9 -35 32
2011-12 80 5 14 19 12 16

Best #4: Chris Phillips

Not much debate here. That's not to take away anything from Shaw or Hill, but it's hard for any Ottawa defenseman to compare with Chris. Phillips is now in the twilight of his career and questions about his legacy are becoming more focused. It is not a question of whether Phillips is the franchise's best #4 ever, but rather, will anyone wear #4 for Ottawa again? Will Chris join Daniel Alfredsson as the only players in the history of the modern franchise to have their numbers retired? Phillips' longevity and loyalty will surely count for something in this debate as will his years of dedicated leadership. However, defensive excellence is harder to quantify and advanced statistics are a recent development. Consequently, many of his earlier seasons are statistically incomplete in terms of advanced statistics. His sharp decline over the past two seasons will surely count against him as well. However the Senators choose to remember Chris Phillips when his playing days are over, he will remain in the minds of many as Ottawa's only #4.

Worst #4: Sean Hill

It was close, but Hill's first season, which was a productive one, came while he was wearing #3 and his final two seasons were shortened considerably by injury and trade. Both Hill and Shaw have poor +/- numbers (while playing on some admittedly horrible teams), but Shaw was more of an offensive threat during his time in the black, white, and red, making Hill the worst #4, by the numbers.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Silver Seven

You must be a member of Silver Seven to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Silver Seven. You should read them.

Join Silver Seven

You must be a member of Silver Seven to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Silver Seven. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker