Ottawa Senators: Sending Mika Zibanejad to Sweden… a Good Move?

Stephen BrownCorrespondent IIOctober 27, 2011

OTTAWA, CANADA - OCTOBER 11: Mika Zibanejad #93 of the Ottawa Senators walks the red carpet and high fives fans during the Senators' 20th anniversary pre-game ceremonies prior to the start of the NHL home opener against the Minnesota Wild at Scotiabank Place on October 11, 2011 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)
Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images

Ottawa Senators forward Mika Zibanejad is going back to the Swedish Elite League.

The 18-year old forward, who was selected with the sixth overall pick in the 2011 draft, much to the dismay of many Senator fans, is returning to Djurgarden to refine his skills.

As such a young player trying to crack the Senators team for playing time, some believe this is a great move while others believe that the Senators should focus on getting NHL experience for their young prospects.

Zibanejad had not been getting much ice time and has not had the chance to showcase his skills with the Senators, so it is tough to believe he would have stuck around with the big club.

It is tough for the youngster, who many believe will be the next captain of the power-play to make a name for himself when averaging just over 12 minutes a game over the past six. Not to mention, only averaging 13 seconds of power-play time over the last four games.

Zibanejad potted an assist in the season opener but did not register a point in the next eight games making his demotion an easy fit.

Brian Murray stated that he believed he was playing a little over his head. He continued: “He is going to be a legitimate first-line player for them [Djurgarden] a power play guy. He might not reach that status with our team this year."

The most positive thing is that Murray said might showing that he believes Zibanejad has great promise.

This is not out of the ordinary as once a rookie plays ten games in the NHL in his entry-level contract, the first year is used up.

Zibanejad will most likely play in the WJHC and continue to improve his game in Djurgarden. Personally, I believe that either MZ or Nikita Filatov should be on the big club.

Although this is a good decision all around, many Senators fans, who did not like the pick during the draft, will be upset that their sixth pick is in the minors while Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is potting hat tricks.