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2019-20 Year in Review: Career 'firsts'

by Matt Tidcombe @matttidcombe

NHL debuts. First career goals. First win. The 2019-20 Ottawa Senators season had a lot of 'firsts.' 

From Scott Sabourin making the team out of training camp to Marcus Hogberg getting his long-awaited first NHL win, here's a look back at a number of 'firsts' from the past season.

NHL debuts

All-in-all, 2019-20 saw four players make their NHL debuts in Ottawa. After 311 games in the minor leagues, Sabourin finally made the jump to the NHL, playing in the team's season-opener in Toronto on Oct. 2. He also had a debut to remember (we'll get to that in a moment) en-route to playing 35 games during his rookie campaign.

JC Beaudin made his NHL debut Oct. 23 against Detroit for the first of 22 games with Ottawa while Jonathan Davidsson lined up six times with his NHL debut coming on Nov. 7 vs. the Kings. Finally, Sens fans got a glimpse of the future in Josh Norris, who stepped onto NHL ice for the first time on Feb. 22 against Montreal in the first of three NHL appearances.

First NHL goal

Back to Sabourin, the Orleans native buried his first NHL goal in his debut against the Maple Leafs, finishing off Filip Chlapik's pass.

"It was pretty surreal," Sabourin said during his intermission interview. "It didn't really set in at the time but I'm sure ... it will come back to me but it was fun."

 

 

The 27-year-old became the seventh player in franchise history to score in his NHL debut with Ottawa joining Drake Batherson, Max Lajoie, Wade Redden, Andreas Dackell, Steve Larouche and Pavol Demitra.

Sabourin also had a big hand in Vitaly Abramov's first, and so far, only career goal, having the primary assist on the Russian's tap-in on Oct. 10 against St. Louis.

And who can forget Logan Brown's first NHL goal, beating New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist with a gorgeous bardown wrister from the left faceoff circle on Nov. 22.

"It was definitely something cool and something I had dreamed about my entire life," Brown said. "To do it against Henrik Lundqvist was a cherry on top to do it against a Hall of Fame goalie. It was special."

 

 

First NHL win

Marcus Hogberg was the only rookie goaltender to suit up for the Sens this year and it took him his fourth appearance of the season, and eighth career NHL game, to finally secure his first win in the big leagues after a 5-4 overtime victory against Nashville on Dec. 19.

"It was amazing," Hogberg said. "I was really happy in that moment."

Hogberg would make 21 starts in 2019-20, earning points in more than half of those appearances with a .904 save percentage in 24 games.

 

 

Some other firsts:

  • Nick Paul had the first multi-goal game of his career against San Jose on Oct. 27. He'd later repeat the feat against Pittsburgh on Dec. 30.  
  • While we touched on first goals already, five players recorded their first NHL assists during 2019-20: JC Beaudin, Erik Brannstrom, Jonathan Davidsson, Andreas Englund and Scott Sabourin. Oddly enough, Beaudin and Davidsson had their first NHL points on the same goal.
  • Anthony Duclair scored his first hat-trick in an Ottawa jersey on Dec. 14 in a 4-3 overtime victory over Columbus. He became the 28th player in franchise history to score a hat-trick.
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