Young Ottawa Senators defenseman Thomas Chabot has all the confidence of the organization, but general manager Pierre Dorion would like to put a little less on the shoulders of the Quebecer despite his success.
At just 23, the Sainte-Marie native plays an average of 26 minutes per game and has sometimes spent more than half an hour on the ice. Dorion believes that the “Sens” defense has improved during the off-season, with the arrivals of Erik Gudbranson and Josh Brown and the draft selection of Jake Sanderson.
He does not intend to diminish Chabot’s tasks, but at least to ensure that the blue brigade does not rest entirely on his shoulders.
“I believe that the year under DJ [Smith, l’entraîneur-chef] was a learning year, especially for his puck-less play, Dorion told Sportsnet on Friday. Obviously, Thomas plays big minutes for us, he is able to make good transition games with his skating and his hockey sense. “
“At the same time, we want Thomas to become a complete hockey player, and I believe that DJ and [l’entraîneur associé] Jack Capuano helped Thomas a lot to progress. Maybe next year he’ll have some time shorthanded. We don’t want him to play 30 minutes, but you might see his role increase as the season progresses. ”
In 2019-2020, Chabot amassed 39 points in 71 games, but showed the lowest differential of his career, with -18. It is also the worst among the Senators, but it must be remembered that Ottawa was one of the worst teams in the National Hockey League.
Moreover, Dorion has not expressed interest in bringing back the great defender Zdeno Chara to the Canadian capital. “I believe that our left side with Chabot, [Mike] Reilly, [Christian] Wolanin and [Erik] Brannstrom, is quite comprehensive. I think the boat has passed, ”he admitted.