With 20 picks over the next two drafts, the Sabres have a great opportunity to make this team a real contender. We’ve already seen an improvement from last year and the potential from guys like Jack Eichel, Sam Reinhart and Ryan O’Reilly.
The Trade Deadline is approaching, and it leaves the Sabres with options. They have a few players that other teams are looking at – trade bait.
What general manager Tim Murray will have to decide is whether the Sabres want to stockpile draft picks and trade away current players or use those draft picks to land other players that can help support Eichel.
In this article, we’re going to look at which current Sabres are most likely to be dealt.
Jamie McGinn: At 27 years old, the forward has put up that many points, and could surpass his career-high of 38. He hasn’t done it yet, but McGinn is a potential 20 goal scorer and fans have enjoyed him in his first year with Buffalo.
McGinn is in the final year of his contract, making just under $3M. Whether teams want him as a rental player or to sign him long term, he’s the Sabres’ biggest piece of trade bait. He could bring back a solid return in a trade, but the Sabres have landed a great, young player in McGinn.
David Legwand: Experience. This guy has it. The 35-year-old is in his 17th year and on his 4th NHL team. All teams can appreciate experience and if they’re going to the playoffs, then it’s one thing that can help a team.
Legwand hasn’t done much on the scoresheet (12 points in 57 games), so dealing him for a pick seems to make sense. While it’s important to have veterans as part of a rebuild, Legwand’s short stint with the Sabres could be nearing its’ end. He’s making $3M this season and will be a unrestricted free agent this summer. Trading him and getting something in return is a good possibility.
Tyler Ennis: He’s spent seven seasons in Buffalo and hit the 20-goal mark three times. His name has come up before in rumors, but with his injury this season, he may very well stay put. Of course, the Sabres acquired Evander Kane and waited for him to get healthy. Perhaps one team would be willing to do the same with Ennis?
Chad Johnson: Six NHL seasons. Five NHL teams. He could be headed to another. Johnson has put up respectable numbers with the Sabres this season, but Robin Lehner is the No. 1 starter. With Linus Ullmark in Rochester, Buffalo could trade Johnson to a team seeking some depth in goal. Johnson’s contract of $1.3M expires this summer.
Of these four players, who would you like to see the Sabres trade?