Record: 32-39-11 75p (5th in Atlantic)
Playoffs: Did Not Qualify
F – Drake Caggiula (PIT), D – Colin Miller (DAL), G – Dustin Tokarski (PIT), F – Cody Eakin
D – Ilya Lyubushkin, F – Riley Sheahan, G – Eric Comrie, D – Kale Clague
After trading their former captain Jack Eichel to the Vegas Golden Knights, the Buffalo Sabres would pick themselves up and move forward as they would dig themselves out of the pit of despair. The Sabres would finish 24th in the NHL, and 5th in the Atlantic Division which were both improvements from the season before, and a big part of that can be credited to the trade of Eichel. Moving on from the messy divorce that they had with Eichel helped the Sabres take that step forward that they really needed. Acquiring Alex Tuch and prospect Peyton Krebs from the Knights helped inject new life into the Sabres as well. The true turning point, however, was when Jack Eichel would return with the Golden Knights, and the Sabres would put out possibly one of their best performances of the season as they would defeat the Knights. Tage Thompson is going to have a prove it year this season, as we’ll all want to see whether or not last season was a fluke, or if he’s the real deal.
To end the season the Sabres would go 6-4-0, and have top defensive prospect Owen Power debut. Along with the additions of Cale Klague and Ilya Lyubushkin, and the rise of fellow prospect Jacob Bryson, the Sabres have improved themselves defensively. With an offensive corps still intact, the biggest question for the Sabres going into this season will be goaltending. Craig Anderson will get another year between the pipes as the number one, but will he be able to stay healthy for the duration of the season? Eric Comrie was brought in to be Anderson’s backup, and Malcolm Subban will be returning for another season as well, but both have not proven to be viable long term 1B goalies.
This will most likely be another season that the Sabres will not make the playoffs, but this will be a team that will continue to improve and rise up in the standings, and could possibly challenge for a Wild Card spot if they are lucky.