The pre-season is fast-approaching, meaning the season is about to get underway. Teams are working through training camp and finalizing their rosters. On Saturday, the Ottawa Senators and St. Louis Blues completed a trade that will alter that process. Senators general manager Pierre Dorion has shipped centreman Logan Brown and a conditional fourth-round pick in 2022 to the Blues in exchange for Zach Sanford.
Zach Sanford Traded to the Ottawa Senators for Logan Brown, Draft Pick
The deal between the two teams is as detailed: Logan Brown is headed from Ottawa to St. Louis, along with a conditional draft pick, for Zach Sanford. The draft pick is a fourth-round pick in 2022. If Brown plays more than 30 NHL games with the Blues, then the pick will be removed from the deal.
Brown, 23, stands 6’6” and weighs 227 pounds. Brown’s size and skill while in the juniors are what led to him being selected 11th overall in the 2016 draft by the Senators. So far he has played 30 NHL games over four seasons, recording nine points. He’s also played an additional 94 AHL games in that span, recording 79 points. Last season, the North Carolina native saw one NHL game and 13 AHL games. Brown is hoping to land a bottom-six role as a two-way forward, with offensive upside.
What Sanford Brings to Ottawa
This off-season, Ottawa has acquired many low-risk depth players to battle for roles on the team, as they transition to their younger players. Sanford, 26, is more established than Brown. He has played 209 NHL games to this point, with 74 points. He has not seen more than an average of 14:53 time on ice per game over a full season though his role has gotten larger year-to-year, which is promising. That being said, last season Sanford’s production took a step back. He went from scoring 16 goals and 30 points in 58 games to 10 goals and six assists for 16 points in 52 games.
As a Senator, Sanford will be given a bigger role to take a step forward in his development that he would not see in St Louis. The former Boston College Eagle is a low-risk trade that could bring them a big reward. According to DailyFaceoff, Sanford is plugged into the third line left-wing position, next to Nick Paul and Shane Pinto. Connor Brown and Drake Batherson are ahead of him on the left-wing depth chart, but if he plays well, he could jump past either one of those players.
To sum up, Ottawa receives a player that has strong NHL experience that they know can provide them at least strong third-line minutes. They got a solid middle-six guy like Sanford in exchange for a guy that never really stuck for them over a few seasons in the organization. It’s an immediate upgrade and provides more competition for the younger guys on the roster. This will make them fight for an opportunity. Sanford could also provide Ottawa with a trade chip later in the year.
For St. Louis, they are going through changes, particularly with Vladimir Tarasenko wanting out. In turn, they are getting a forward in Brown that possesses a tantalizing combination of size and skill. The problem is that Brown has yet to prove himself. The Blues let go of a solid depth forward for a guy who may not even work out for them. Although, one positive in the deal is that Brown does come with the potential for a higher ceiling than Sanford.
As with all trades, only time will tell who wins this deal.