Having recently signed goaltender Nathan Lawson, today the Senators put one of the finishing touches on the Binghamton roster by agreeing to terms with restricted free agent defenceman Eric Gryba.
The organization announced that it is a two-way, two-year deal. Financial terms of the deal were not revealed but it should be expected that his new contract will feature raises on the AHL and NHL salaries that were part of his entry-level contract. Per Capgeek, the last year of his ELC called for him to be paid an AHL salary of $62,500 and a NHL salary of $585,000.
Having played in two full seasons in Bingo, the 2006 third round pick (68th overall) has yet to play in an actual NHL game. With a full assortment of defencemen at the NHL level and prospects like Mark Borowiecki and Patrick Wiercioch ahead of him on the depth chart, it's not expected that he'll vie for a spot in training camp. (And hell, if you buy into Tim Murray's spin on the Andre Benoit signing, Gryba's slotted behind him as well.)
In all likelihood, the rugged blueliner is competing to position himself for a mid-season promotion in the event of an injury to one or two defencemen. In other words, if he plays a significant number of games for the Senators this season, something has gone horrifically, horrifically wrong.
Here are his professional numbers from the last two seasons in Bingo (note: he did have a six game cup of coffee at the conclusion of his 2009/10 season at Boston University):
Update: Jim O'Brien Re-signs with Sens
In a haste to put up the Gryba news, I almost missed the news that Jim O'Brien had agreed to a new deal as well.
According to the organization's press release, it's a two-year deal. Unfortunately, the release failed to divulge the specific details -- For hoow much money? Is it a two-way or one-way deal? -- that fans actually clamor for because we're all living in a salary cap world.
And as I write this complaint, the Senators' official Twitter account announces that O'Brien's cap hit carries an average annual value of $637,500.
Cap floor, here we come!
There still is no word as to whether O'Brien's deal is a one or two-way deal, but if it's the former, the likelihood of Jesse Winchester being brought back into the fold probably just got a little worse.
In 28 games for the Senators last season, the team's 2007 first round pick (29th overall) immeasurably improved his stock within the organization by contributing 3 goals and six points. He was a positive corsi player who took advantage of playing against soft competition.
Like the rest of the centers on Ottawa's roster who aren't named Jason Spezza, if there's a complaint to be made against O'Brien's game, 47.3-percent faceoff success rate. It's a facet of the game that he will need to improve now that other fourth line centers like Winchester and Konopka have or will move on.
Update: 2:50 pm
O'Brien's contract is a one-way deal.
SteffeG raises a valid point:
O'Brien could've gotten more if he accepted his qualifying offer, but choose security of one-way and two-year term. Smart decision. #Sens— Stefan G:son (@steffeG) July 18, 2012