Sabres Draft Day 2: Size, defense, and a brutal offseason injury
The news of Jack Quinn's Achilles' tendon injury overshadows a solid second day for the Sabres in Nashville
NASHVILLE — One day after the Buffalo Sabres went with the super-skilled smaller forward Zach Benson, their eventful second day saw them take care of some rather obvious business. It also brought about tough news to the current roster.
Balance in all things, you see.
The bad news: Jack Quinn sustained an Achilles’ tendon injury during offseason workouts that required surgery to repair. Quinn will miss 4-6 months which could put him out of action until 2024.
A news lead to the second day of the draft isn’t what anyone had in mind and it’s one that will affect how the Sabres will approach the offseason which kicks off in earnest Saturday with the start of free agency.
“I think a lot about depth up and down your lineup and there’s going to be different times during the season where you have injuries, how do you work your way through that,” Sabres GM Kevyn Adams said. “And this is one that on the longer-term, so do you do something different? I think for us it’s trying to make sure we’re putting a team that’s deep on the ice, and fortunately we are, especially up front.
“I don’t if it changed any things, but for sure, it’s something we’ll be thinking about over the next 48 hours and evaluate.”
The possible effects Quinn’s absence will have center around the possibility of dealing Victor Olofsson, re-signing Tyson Jost, and when it gets closer to training camp, the opportunity it’ll provide rookies Matthew Savoie, Jiri Kulich, and Isak Rosén to not just crack the Sabres roster but become immediate impact players.
“If someone comes in and kicks the door open and just absolutely belongs on our team and is going to help us win hockey games, we’re going to find a way to make room,” Adams said. “So regardless of this situation or not, that’s what we will do. But I also wouldn’t say that we would now sit here and say, ‘We should fast track someone’ or we would change the timeline on any of our prospects based on this. But we’re open to it. And fortunately, we built that pipeline up where we feel that we have some exciting kids coming.”
Developing a deep and talented prospect pool helps cushion the blow when brutal injuries occur. While Quinn’s injury is a harsh blow, it’s not the end of the world, nor a reason to panic. If anything, it highlighted why drafting is vital to the future success of the Sabres and their Day 2 picks showed they intend to keep the wheels on the machine well-greased.
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