Kicking around ideas for Sabres at the 2023 NHL Draft
It's nice to not need draft picks to come through immediately
When it was time for the NHL Draft, it wasn’t all that long ago when it was the Buffalo Sabres’ time to shine (or otherwise). After all, the future and the hope it offers is the never-ending high to chase when things aren’t going well.
“It can’t get any worse.”
After a while you learn not to say that. Let’s be honest, those words should be banned from being said in reference to sports in Buffalo (and Detroit, Atlanta, Houston, Philadelphia, etc.) and the converse works as well when things are looking promising. Plenty of times in recent history there have been teams that appeared to be on the rise only to see something (or things) go sideways and park the dreams of a title on the side of the road.
Optimism in the Sabres hasn’t been this high in a very long time. The future looks very bright with the emergences of Rasmus Dahlin as a Norris-level defenseman, Tage Thompson as a Richard Trophy kind of scorer, Dylan Cozens as a tenacious centerman who can score, and Owen Power following in the footsteps of Dahlin. Two rocks on defense, two dazzlers up front with a host of others either performing above expectations (Jeff Skinner) or young players on the rise (Jack Quinn, JJ Peterka). There are the prospects in line behind those players like Jiri Kulich and Isak Rosén with Ryan Johnson on defense with high hopes.
It’s a great set up but it doesn’t guarantee future success. It also doesn’t mean being able to goof around at the draft thinking you’re all set so if you miss a pick, it doesn’t kill you. Au contraire. Everything can be good now, but if the pipeline dries up at any point a team is staring trouble in the eye. Adams and his scouts know they cannot allow that to happen which makes every draft a vital one.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Noted Hockey to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.