The shuffling continues for the Ottawa Senators prior to the NHL Trade Deadline. 24 hours after dealing defender Dion Phaneuf to the Los Angeles Kings, the Sens continue their changes. The Ottawa Senators trade Chris DiDomenico in exchange for Chicago Blackhawks defender Ville Pokka.
Ottawa Senators trade Chris DiDomenico for Chicago Blackhawks Ville Pokka
A day after waiving DiDomenico, the Senators felt they got a fair return on the forward. In Chris Didomenico, the Blackhawks are getting a steady third liner who has shown he can play in the NHL. After coming to the Senators last year from Switzerland, Didomenico has shown that he can be a solid bottom six contributor. DiDomenico this season has six goals and four assists for 10 points in 24 games played. Only a goal behind Sens forward Bobby Ryan. This Ottawa Senators trade signifies that changes are coming and the team would like to get younger.
DiDomenico, 28, was heavily favoured by Sens head coach Guy Boucher. The forward has seen time in the top six role at points of his season too. He has also shown that he can compete in the AHL, registering 14 points in 25 games played for the Belleville Senators.
Ville Pokka, 23, is an interesting return for the Senators. A young defender who has yet to step onto NHL ice but has shown promise in his numbers. The 2012 second rounder has spent the last four seasons in the American Hockey League. In the four years, Pokka has 127 points in 266 games played. His best season was in 2014-15, where he put up 45 points in 76 games played for the Rockford IceHogs.
Pokka is set to be a restricted free agent this upcoming off-season. Strong consistent play might find the rookie with another NHL deal. With a couple of defenders coming off the books this upcoming off-season, Pokka might see NHL ice full time next year if he can re-sign. This Ottawa Senators trade shows that the team is wanting to get younger going forward, and acquiring a cheap young defender is a strong start.