Josh Hennessy was originally drafted by the San Jose Sharks 43rd overall in 2003. After turning pro with the Sharks farm team in Cleveland, Hennessy was traded along with Tom Preissing to the Chicago Blackhawks for Mark Bell. Hennessy’s stay with the Hawks was brief to say the least as he was repackaged with Preissing and Michal Barinka to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Martin Havlat and Bryan Smolinski.
2000-01: Hennessy played for Milton Academy in Massachussets before moving onto the QMJHL for the Quebec Remparts at the age of 16. He was a standout at Milton scoring 30 goals and 60 points in 28 games.
2001-02: In his rookie season in the QMJHL, Hennessy was the Remparts’ top rookie and finished seventh in rookie scoring with 20 goals and 20 assists, good for sixth on Quebec. The team’s defensive woes were quite apparent and Hennessy’s plus/minus rating suffered as a result, finishing with a dismal -26. During the play-offs Hennessy stepped it up and led the Remparts in scoring with three goals and nine assists in nine games.
2002-03: Following a solid finish to the 2001-02 season, Hennessy was named Assistant Captain and picked up where he left off finishing second on the Remparts in scoring. Hennessy’s 84 points in 72 games placed him 24th in the QMJHL, and his 16 power play goals were good for ninth. A nine-game, seven-game, and five game scoring streak were key in boosting Hennessy’s production. The speedster’s offensive exploits the final week of the season saw him named the QMJHL "Offensive Player of the Week," featuring a hat trick against Chicoutimi on March 12. Hennessy vastly improved his two-way game finishing the season with a solid +29. In the play-offs, Hennessy finished third on Quebec in scoring with 6 goals and 9 assists in 11 games. The Remparts hosted the 2003 Memorial Cup tournament and Hennessy lead the way in a losing cause with 4 assists in 3 games.
Hennessy’s impressive season drew the attention of the San Jose Sharks who decided to trade a package of late round picks to the New York Rangers to acquire the 43rd pick overall and select him.
2003-04: In his third full season with the Remparts, Hennessy was named Captain of the Remparts and totaled 82 points (40 goals, 42 assists) in just 59 games. His stock soared as finished tied for fifth in goals despite missing 11 games with injuries including a separated shoulder. Hennessy’s hard work and determination earned him the prestigious QMJHL’s Humanitarian of the Year award. Despite Hennessy’s career season, the Remparts missed the playoffs.
2004-05: In his final junior eligible year, Hennessy continued to serve as team captain for the Remparts. He was also the offensive leader for the team with a total 85 points (35 goals, 50 assists) in 68 games to go along with an impressive +28 rating. The Remparts returned to the QMJHL playoffs and Hennessy posted 11 points in 13 games.
2005-06: Played his rookie pro season with the Cleveland Barons (AHL) where he totaled 63 points (24 goals, 39 assists) in 80 games. He led the team in goals, assists and points. Although Hennessy had a strong year, he did not receive any call-ups to San Jose.
2006-07: Hennessy was traded to the Senators prior to the start of the season, the majority of which he played with the Binghamton Senators (AHL). In 76 AHL games, he totaled 57 points (27 goals, 30 assists). He made his NHL debut December 12, 2006 versus the Detroit Red Wings and scored his first NHL goal on January 7, 2007 against the Philadelphia Flyers. He appeared in a total of ten games with Ottawa picking up only the one goal and two minor penalties.
2007-08: Hennessy recorded 22 goals and 29 assists with AHL Binghamton, well enough for second on the team honors for scoring. He recorded 11 multi-point games that season and three game-winning goals. He played the first two games of the season in Ottawa and returned on Feb. 6 to play in three more games for the Senators.
2008-09: Hennessy’s development has completely plateaued, being surpassed at the center position by several other Senators prospects.
Hennessy's primary strengths are his excellent skating, acceleration, and speed. He is the type of player who seems to be everywhere on the ice and always around the puck. An effective forechecker, Hennessy has terrific work ethic and skates hard every shift, making him noticeable every time he’s on the ice. Hennessy is not afraid to through his weight around and is willing to get his nose dirty. He has been known to frustrate opponents due to his knack for jamming at loose pucks even after the whistle has blown. Hennessy has a good set of hands and can score goals as well as create offense for his linemates. He possesses a strong competitive nature and a stable frame with good balance. Some weaknesses include a tendency to circle and glide too much, more dedication to backchecking, and a need to add some extra size/strength.
Barring an unexpectedly impressive showing in training camp, Hennessy appears to be a career AHLer.