A few days after signing NCAA unrestricted free agent forward Cole Schneider, the Ottawa Senators have been linked to yet another unsigned collegiate player. This time, it's Western Michigan defenceman Danny DeKeyser.
From the Team 1200's Shawn Simpson (@ssimpsonhockey):
Danny Dekeyser from Western Michigan is the top College UFA. 25 teams chasing the D man. Ottawa in the mix. Still has two years of school.
There's something about hearing that the Senators are just one of twenty-five teams that are interested in DeKeyser that just warms the cockles of your heart. That's a four percent chance!
Of course, DeKeyser's decision to leave school after his sophomore season may not be as certain as some hockey executives are hoping. Under the tutelage of former NHL bench boss Andy Murray, DeKeyser's game has developed well.
The 6'3" 190 lb product of Algonac, Michigan is renowned for his skating ability and first pass. Despite the reservations that some fans may have towards signing another NCAA product, Andy Murray assures everyone that DeKeyser is a NHL calibre player.
“He’s a really smart player. He’s a great leader, has a great stick, plays with some physical bite and makes good decisions with the puck. My feeling is, from my experience in the league, that he’s certainly capable of being an NHLer. When that happens, I’m not sure, but he’s capable.”
Per Detroit's assistant GM Jim Nill:
"It's only his second year of college hockey. He may even decide to stay another year," Nill says. "He can turn pro, or he can decide to go back and be a junior in college hockey under a great coach in Andy Murray. Whichever decision they make is not going to be wrong."
Correction, whichever decision DeKeyser makes, anything that doesn't involve signing with the Ottawa Senators will be wrong.
Other News of Pithy Importance:
– According to Alex Marchand, the Ottawa Senators' DJ who spins tracks at SBP during games, tonight's game will mark the debut of the HD video feed for the new scoreboard.
– Although Craig Anderson probably will not be playing in any games this weekend, however, there's a good chance that he could play as early as next week – thereby ending Alex Auld's ineffectual run as Ottawa's backup goaltender.
– Paul MacLean has announced that Bobby Butler will replace Kaspars Daugavins on the team's fourth line tonight. Meh.