Great News This Summer For Buffalo Sabres Fans
The Buffalo Sabres are not participating in an NHL postseason for the 11th straight season, but unlike many of those years, the future looks very bright for the Sabres.
The team has a legitimate top line scorer in Tage Thompson, who broke out with 38 goals in 2021-2022. Veteran winger Jeff Skinner finally came back to his old self with 33 goals and 63 points, and defenseman Rasmus Dahlin had his best season in the NHL with 13 goals and 53 points.
The team has two big time prospects with the Rochester Amerks right now: forwards JJ Peterka and Jack Quinn. They also have defenseman Casey Fitzgerald and Mattias Samuelsson, along with number one overall pick, Owen Power.
Sabres fans are about to get more great news this summer, as that prospect pool is about to get even larger.
Buffalo will have a very busy 2022 NHL Entry Draft, since general manager Kevyn Adams holds three first round picks.
Two of those picks we know: 9th and 16th overall. The 16th overall pick is from the Vegas Golden Knights, which they received as part of the Jack Eichel trade.
The Sabres will also have a pick near the end of the first round, like 28th overall. That is from the Florida Panthers, as part of the Sam Reinhart trade.
Buffalo has four of the top 41 picks in the 2022 NHL Draft -- the most of any team that early.
Adams recently signed 2021 draft picks, Aleksander Kisakov (forward, 2nd round) and Olivier Nadeau (forward, 4th round).
Buffalo will have the best pool of prospects (at least the most in quantity) after the 2022 NHL Draft. Goaltending is the Sabres biggest weakness, but they have Devon Levi (Northeastern) and Erik Portillo (Michigan) in college. Both are two of the best goaltending prospects in the NHL.
2023 might be a year too early for a playoff push, but the expectation is that by 2024, the Sabres will be a playoff contender.