The Ottawa Senators have begun what is likely to be a busy six days before the NHL trade deadline.
The team announced, today, that they have traded defenceman Dylan DeMelo to the Winnipeg Jets, in exchange for their third-round pick in this year’s draft. DeMelo is an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season, and it has been reported that he and the team were fairly far apart in terms of contract negotiations. Pierre Lebrun has since reported that the Senators never made a formal offer.
There were contract discussions, yes, but Dylan Demelo's agent Brian MacDonald says they never got an official contract offer from the Senators on the pending UFA blue-liner.— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) February 18, 2020
The Jets were in dire need of a defenceman in the absence of Dustin Byfuglien, and DeMelo fills the hole for a meagre cap hit of $900K.
The 26 year-old London, Ontario, native arrived in Ottawa from the San Jose Sharks via the Erik Karlsson trade. He tallied 32 points in 126 games with the Sens, but was heralded for his steadying influence on the back end, solid possession numbers, and positive impact as Thomas Chabot’s partner for much of last season.
The trade leaves somewhat of a question mark for Ottawa, having only Nikita Zaitsev locked up long-term on the right side, with Christian Jaros in Belleville, and Jacob Bernard-Docker and Lassi Thomson both at least a year away.
There are no conditions on the pick.