The NHL draft begins at 8 p.m. Friday on ESPN, and the Buffalo Sabres have the first pick overall. Get caught up with our team coverage leading into the first round.
The Sabres made 11 selections in this year's draft, but outside the team's draft room, all the attention was focused on the names fans have known for many years: Rasmus Ristolainen and Sam Reinhart.
For the most part, the Sabres opted for players they were able to scout in-person, whether it was second-round selection Prokhor Poltapov at the IIHF Under-18 World Championship or Olivier Nadeau and Viljami Marjala in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Clark, a goalie, finished the regular season with an 18-2-1 record, three shutouts, a 1.92 goals against average and a .935 save percentage to help lead the Jersey Hitmen to the United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL) championship.
Kozak, 18, has played two seasons with the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League, totaling three goals and 11 points in 18 games during a Covid-19-shortened season in 2020-21.
The 6-foot-4, 207-pounder is yet another player the Sabres saw at the World Under-18 tournament in Frisco, Texas. He had five assists in seven games in that tournament for Russia.
Listed at 6-foot-4, 190 pounds, von Barnekow-Lofberg spent most of last season with Tyringe of Sweden's third-tier professional league, totaling nine goals and 22 points in 26 games.
Marjala played in 2020-2021 for the Quebec Remparts in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and was ranked 65th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting.
With pick No. 97 in the fourth round, the Sabres selected right wing Olivier Nadeau from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Shawinigan Cataractes.
With the 95th overall pick of the NHL draft, the Buffalo Sabres used their second selection of Round 3 to take Saginaw Spirit left winger Josh Bloom.
Sardarian, 18, was teammates with Sabres second-round draft choice Prokhor Poltapov on Krasnaya Armiya Moskva of Russia's top junior league.
Reinhart is headed to the Sabres' Atlantic Division rival in exchange for goalie prospect Devon Levi and a 2022 first-round draft choice.
With their second pick of the second round in the NHL draft, the Sabres took Kisakov, a Russian left winger, at No. 53 overall Saturday.
The Buffalo Sabres' rebuild added another potential high upside forward with the first pick of the second round Saturday morning.
Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman reported in the wee hours of Saturday morning that the Sabres will be getting prospect goalie Devon Levi back.
Power, a 6-foot-6 left shot defenseman ranked by NHL Central Scouting as the top North American skater in this class, is coming off an impressive freshman season at the University of Michigan and a remarkable performance against much older competition at the IIHF World Championship in Latvia.
Power, an 18-year-old with a left-handed shot, became the 16th defenseman to be drafted first overall and the first since the Sabres selected Rasmus Dahlin in 2018.
The 5-foot-11, 156-pound Rosen was one of Sweden's top forwards in the World Under-18 tournament at Frisco, Texas, collecting a team-high seven goals and nine points in seven games as Sweden won the bronze medal.
Ristolainen was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for defenseman Robert Hagg, a first round pick in this year's draft, No. 14 overall, and a second-round selection in 2023.
Karmanos and director of scouting Jerry Forton will be leading the draft and, as much as Sabres fans don't want to hear it, the only way to approach the annual shopping spree of amateur talent is with a long-term approach.
- Lance Lysowski
- 9 min to read
Power is the Sabres’ presumed selection with the first overall pick, but it’s uncertain where he will play this season.
For whatever reason, no one outside KeyBank Center knows who the Sabres will select first overall.
Borgen is a restricted free agent and won't receive much of a raise from his $864,166 cap hit last season.
Dahlin, a 21-year-old drafted first overall by Buffalo in 2018, is a restricted free agent after playing in 197 games across three seasons with the Sabres.
Here's a look at every player, signed and unsigned, who has yet to appear in more than 15 NHL games for the club.
- News Staff Reporter
Speculation has run rampant since Buffalo Sabres captain Jack Eichel announced in May that he had a disconnect with the team about how best to address a neck injury that has sidelined him since March.
- Lance Lysowski
- 8 min to read
The on-ice development of many prospects was impacted by restrictions to combat the spread of the virus, as positive Covid-19 tests wreaked havoc on the schedules of every active league and players couldn’t train as they normally would. This has caused the NHL’s 32 teams to rethink how they evaluate talent in this unusual year, which likely will impact their draft rankings.
"Should we be thinking this is Jack Eichel's last week with the Buffalo Sabres? Possible, but not likely," writes Mike Harrington.
"It wasn't an easy year. It was tough. I struggled more than I wanted to and production-wise, but I think it helped me a lot in the long run,” Quinn said.
“I think I'm a two-way defenseman that can play in all situations and log a lot of minutes,” Power said when asked why he should be selected first overall.
With standouts like Rasmus Ristolainen, Sam Reinhart and Jack Eichel all taken in the first round the last three years, the Buffalo Sabres’ recent draft history has provided some immediate dividends. While the career paths of those three players have yet to be written, the Sabres have flourished over the years with selections both at the top of the draft and in lower rounds. Here’s Mike Harrington’s look at the best draft choices in Sabres
With multiple Buffalo scouts and executives in attendance, Rosen led Sweden in scoring with seven goals in seven games at the IIHF Under-18 World Championships in April.