Cleat Geeks

Best of The Rest


Despite being the last place team in the league; there is no hockey club in better position for next season than the Buffalo Sabres.

No-matter what any non-playoff GM says, they would most likely trade their entire franchise to be in the position of the Sabres. Not only does Buffalo have three of the first 31 picks in this year’s NHL entry level draft, but with only 48 points on the season they are a lock for having the best odds to land what scouts are considering the greatest talent since Sidney Crosby in OHL – superstar Connor McDavid.

The hockey gods haven’t always been the best to Buffalo. Fortunately, even divine intervention wouldn’t stop them from landing a generational talent. If the Sabres fall to second in the lottery then they will end up with Boston University forward Jack Eichel. Eichel lead all NCAA hockey players in points this season as a rookie and captained the United States World Junior team as a 17 year-old.

Eichel or McDavid wont be the only top prospects that Buffalo fans will be welcoming to the ice next season. Six Buffalo Sabres prospects will play in this years NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship. Another handful will be playing in Canadian Hockey League rinks all spring as important pieces to their franchises’ playoff run. Sam Reinhart, Nick Baptiste and Justin Bailey have all shown they can dominate at the CHL level and are ready to be funneled into the Sabres system.


Justin Bailey


With the amount of talent the Sabres have who are ready to make an impact on the NHL, Buffalo GM, Tim Murray, will have room to let a few prospect go for more veterans, adding yet another arrow to Murray’s quiver this off-season.

Draft picks and talented prospects does not immediately change a franchise. Murray got the festivities started early in this year’s trade deadline when he completed a blockbuster deal with Winnipeg, sending away defenseman Tyler Myers for Evander Kane. Truth be told, Myers had never lived up to anticipation in Buffalo and was not the right fit for the Sabres. When Kane stays healthy he can be a 30+ goal scorer. In 2011-12 Kane played in 74 games for Winnipeg, his most as a professional in a single season. Kane potted 30 goals and picked up another 27 helpers for 57 points, all career numbers. Many believe Kane is just a season away from elite NHL status, and after a lengthy injury absence folowing shoulder surgery, he will be primed to silence his critics.

Another year will mean players like Zemgus Girgensons, who sits third in points with 30, will get even stronger as their knowledge and comfort level with the pro game also increase. At just 20-years-old, Rasmus Ristolainen is becoming a solid option on D. Ristolainen has been great for the Sabres on the blue line with the man-advantage. His four power play goals are good enough for second on the team.

Pair Kane with the players Buffalo has, and the ones ready to be slotted into the lineup, and instead of talking about the “draft Lottery” this time next year, they may be vying for a wild card spot.


  1. Stephenie Maatta

    April 3, 2015 at 12:48 am

    Aw, this was a very good post. Taking a few minutes and actual effort to generate a good article… but what can I say… I put things off a whole lot and never manage to get anything done.

  2. Kendrick Picozzi

    April 3, 2015 at 1:16 am

    Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Many thanks, However I am encountering problems with your RSS. I don’t understand why I am unable to join it. Is there anybody else having similar RSS problems? Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond? Thanx!!

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