Better Days Are Coming for Buffalo

Rasmus Ristolainen leads the Sabres youth movement. (Getty Images)

Rasmus Ristolainen leads the Sabres youth movement. (Getty Images)

Brian Hardwick

As a Buffalo Sabres fan for many years, you’ve come to realize that there’s been better days for the Sabres.  For the past few seasons we’ve looked more forward to the draft, trade deadline or off-season than we did with the actual season. But, right now we can all take a deep sigh of relief and say “The end  of the beginning is near Buffalo”.   

Buffalo currently has an average age of 26 years old on the roster, and it surely helps that you have guys like Jack Eichel, Sam Reinhart, Ryan O’Reilly, Rasmus Ristolainen, and  Evander Kane are all guys under the age of 25.   All of these guys will also be around for quite sometime.  Each of these guys are also top 6 in points for the Sabres with rookie Reinhart leading the team in goals with 18.    

If you ask me, regardless of the off-season, we will have a playoff caliber team. Robin Lehner has shown that he is capable of being the Sabres goalie for years to come.  With the Sabres at the bottom of the standings once again, you’re gonna get a very good pick in the draft.   If you can get another goal scorer, maybe a guy like Auston Matthews or Matthew Tkachuk can instantly make a difference to your roster.    Would it be nice to sign a high profile name like Steven Stamkos to your roster? Yeah, that would be pretty awesome. But we should use that money to get a top 4 defensemen.  We have been losing games this year because our defence has struggled.   Ristolainen, Bogosian, McCabe, Pysyk are all guys who will be around for quite sometime. But, minus Ristolainen and McCabe, you really don’t have a “top 4 defencemen”   If you can trade a couple of draft picks this year and maybe a prospect or 2. (Rumors are out there that P.K Subban could be on the trade market)   or even sign a guy like Dustin Byfuglien or Keith Yandle, you’ll have a Stanley Cup contender within the next 2-3 years. I’ll end it with this..  Just look at the potential lineup (No, I am not saying the lines will look like this, just picture these guys on the team.)

FORWARDS

Evander Kane-Ryan O’Reilly-Sam Reinhart

Jamie McGinn(If resigned)- Jack Eichel -Zemgus Girgensons

2016 First Round Pick-Tyler Ennis- Marcus Foligno

Nicolas Deslauriers-Brian Gionta- Matt Moulson

DEFENSE

Rasmus Ristolainen- Jake McCabe

Dustin Byfuglien/Keith Yandle- Zach Bogosian

Mark Pysyk- Josh Gorges

Goaltenders

Robin Lehner

Linus Ullmark

*Shout out to Goo Goo Dolls “Better Days” and the Sabres playoff run for the headline

hardwick– Brian Hardwick (@BHardwick8)

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