25-Year-Old Defenseman – Toronto Maple Leafs
Jared Cowen Contract Information:
Signed a three-year, entry-level contract in February of 2010.
Cowen will not play again in 2015-16, and the Maple Leafs are expected to buy out his contract, Mark Masters of TSN reports.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Cowen is still young at just 23-years-old, and already has 158 games of NHL experience under his belt. At 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds, he certainly brings a physical presence to the Senators back end, but he rarely chips in offensively. His 45 PIM in 68 games give him some value, but his scoring totals of six goals and nine assists leave a lot to be desired. He'll play a lot of games again, but won't hold much fantasy value outside of deeper leagues.
Cowen missed all but seven games in 2013 after undergoing hip surgery, but returned to add three assists while playing in all 10 playoff games with the Sens. He's another young player that Ottawa wants to keep going forward, so he'll play a bunch of games in 2013-14, but he's just not the type of player that's going to be too valuable in fantasy leagues. He's 6'5" and plays a stay-at-home game, leaving the scoring to the Senators' other defensemen who are more fleet of foot.
The rookie blueliner had a solid campaign in 2011-12, playing in all 82 regular season games. He was paired with with Sergei Gonchar on Ottawa’s second defensive unit for much of the season. As is typical for a young blueliner, Cowen was up and down throughout the season in terms of his effectiveness. He skates quite well for a big man (he stands 6-foot-5) and has a hard, accurate slap shot. With the departure of Filip Kuba to free agency, look for Cowen to see time on the second power play unit this season. He possesses an underrated offensive skill set and should see a decent boost in production in 2012-13; he had five goals and 12 assists last year. Anywhere from five-to-eight goals and 15 assists is possible for Cowen. He’ll be counted on to play big minutes on the penalty kill as well, likely paired with Marc Methot who was acquired from Columbus in the offseason for Nick Foligno.
Cowen is one of Ottawa's highly-touted blueline prospects who has an excellent chance of making the big club out of training camp this season. Last year, Cowen finished his junior career with Spokane of the WHL and immediately drew into the Binghamton Senators' AHL playoff run, playing big minutes and matching up against other teams' top forward lines, helping the team to an eventual AHL Calder Cup Championship. An extremely smooth skater for a big man, the 6'5", 230 pound Cowen is extremely adept at gaining a solid defensive position to take his man off the puck with either his body or his stick. While being touted as a shutdown defenseman, Cowen's offensive game is highly underrated as he racked up 18 goals and 30 assists for Spokane in 2010-11. He should be able to help Ottawa at both ends of the ice in his rookie season, especially defensively, just don't look for him to score a lot of points.
Ottawa's first-round pick at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, the 6’5” defenseman has seemingly recovered from a serious knee injury which has hampered his development since January of 2009. During Ottawa’s rookie development camp this past summer, Cowen was noticeably faster and stronger on his skates and dominated the other Ottawa rookies. After watching him at the camp, GM Bryan Murray even pointed to Cowen as possibly being able to fill a shutdown role for the coming season. In order to do that however, Cowen will need to seriously outplay one of the established defenders in Ottawa’s bottom pairing (either Chris Campoli or Matt Carkner) at training camp. Ottawa's management has made it clear that there is a spot to be won on the blueline if one of the younger defensemen impress during training camp so the possibility is there for Cowen. Should he not make the team out of camp, expect him to be sent back to the WHL for his last year of junior eligibility. A late-season callup after his junior year is over is a strong possibility though. Cowen has all the tools to become a future No. 1 defenseman in the league so pay close attention to his development over the next year.
Cowen is recovering nicely from the season-ending knee injury he suffered while playing with Spokane of the WHL back in January of 2009. He'll likely play the entire 2009-10 season with Spokane and should be a lock for Canada's U-20 World Junior team. Look for Cowen to make the jump to the pros in 2010-11.