Kukla's Korner

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What The Buffalo Sabres Need To Do

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

This is a franchise with a roster that features nine first-round draft choices, including six taken by the Sabres. It's Year Four for Jack Eichel, five years since Sam Reinhart was drafted, six years since Rasmus Ristolainen was taken. You have a career year going for Jeff Skinner, whom you assume would want to re-sign but nothing is certain in that area.

It's clearly incumbent on General Manager Jason Botterill to make some moves here. Shore up the defense. Shore up the second line. Get C.J. Smith back in the NHL and tell Phil Housley to stop using him on the fourth line. Is Alex Nylander ever going to contribute in the NHL? The Sabres have spent a whole season developing Tage Thompson in the NHL, a bizarre strategy, while their former No. 8 overall pick continues to lag in the AHL.

Sure seems like another example of Botterill de-emphasizing one of Tim Murray's players while pushing one of the guys he traded Ryan O'Reilly to get. In his defense, Nylander  has hardly been a world beater in the AHL but how much longer do we have to watch Vladimir Sobotka contribute almost nothing on a nightly basis before Botterill & Co. try somebody else?

One ridiculous argument you'll hear in response is "they can't win the Stanley Cup this year so why do anything?" News flash here: Only perhaps seven or eight of the 31 teams probably have a legit chance to win the Cup. Does that mean everyone else should just go into a shell and not try to improve?


Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink


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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com