Photo: Forward Mika Zibanejad had a solid rookie season in the NHL, managing seven goals and 13 assists in 42 games for a low-scoring Ottawa Senators team. (Courtesy of Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Ottawa Senators continue to have a deep and talented group of prospects even after trading forwards Stefan Noesen and Jakob Silfverberg to the Anaheim Ducks in part of a package for Bobby Ryan.
Photo: Forward Mika Zibanejad is one of several talented Swedish players in the Ottawa Senators prospect pool. (courtesy of Jay Kopinski/Icon SMI)
The Ottawa Senators pipeline features plenty of homegrown talent, including Kanata's Mark Borowiecki, and nearby Hull's Jean-Gabriel Pageau. Cody Ceci and Shane Prince both played in the Senators' backyard for the Ottawa 67's.
Photo: Now in his third year of professional hockey, Patrick Wiercioch has started to blossom into an offensive defenseman. Through 30 AHL games he has nine goals and nine assists. (Jay Kopinski/Icon SM)
In years past, Ottawa's AHL affiliate has been a mixed roster of AHL veterans, free agent signings, and draft picks. This is no longer the case. The Binghamton Senators are stacked with young talent and are among the youngest teams in the AHL.
Photo: Mark Borowiecki is one of several defensive prospects the Ottawa Senators have playing at the AHL level. (Tony Medina/Icon SMI)
The future of the Ottawa Senators looks bright. The Senators are considered to have one of the better pools of young talent in the NHL and, while some top draftees have recently cemented themselves on the Ottawa roster, most notably Erik Karlsson and Jared Cowen, there are many prospects on the verge of becoming solid NHL contributors in the near future. The club has quality and various skill-sets in all positions and has worked to draft where they previously had weak depth.
Photo: Forward Jakob Silfverberg is one of several Ottawa Senators prospects who will be vying for NHL time in 2012-13. (Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
With a surprise appearance in the Stanley Cup playoffs in 2011-12, the Ottawa Senators' rebuilding blueprint is starting to show signs of success. Competition for roster spots and ice time this coming season should be fierce as Jakob Silfverberg, Mark Borowiecki, and Jim O'Brien appear targeted to claim roster spots in Ottawa. Other prospects such as Mika Zibanejad and Robin Lehner should also push for full time spots in the NHL.