Once the Buffalo Sabres are done collecting their puzzle pieces, it will be a matter of figuring out how they will all fit together. The Sabres have the cornerstones in place with Sam Reinhart at center and Rasmus Ristolainen on defense, but the short-term focus is to make sure that every prospect in the organization takes a step forward.
There is little doubt that the future is very exciting for the Buffalo Sabres. With one of the league’s deepest pool of prospects already and another five picks in the first two rounds of the 2015 NHL Draft, general manager Tim Murray is aggressively laying down the foundations for the rebuilding Sabres.
General manager Tim Murray was all business at his first NHL Draft, wasting little time making his picks. The Buffalo Sabres are quite deep at every position, but since the focus was on defensemen last year with Rasmus Ristolainen and Nikita Zadorov, the attention shifted toward forwards this year. The Sabres used seven of their nine draft picks on forwards, including four in the first two rounds.
The Buffalo Sabres' horrendous start to the 2013-14 season was the clear signal that the team needed to make drastic changes. Ted Nolan replaced Ron Rolston as head coach early in the season, and Darcy Regier was fired after 16 years with the team after a few disappointing seasons and a spotty draft record.
The parent club was in shambles for much of the 2013-14 season, but the plight of the Buffalo Sabres did not adversely affect the development of their deep pool of prospects. Though the Rochester Americans felt the effects of Buffalo's roster shuffle throughout the season, the organization's prospects at the junior and amateur levels performed well, with the majority of them qualifying for the playoffs in their respective leagues.