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Sabres sit in last place, fans getting frustrated

The Sabres sit in last place in the East with only 5 wins after 18 games played. It’s not good enough.

The only thing saving us from drowning is that we have 4 overtime losses which has given us 4 extra points. Once again however, we are losing games in overtime that we should be winning in regulation. This is the SOS from last year and it’s really starting to p*ss me and a lot of other fans off. When are the problems with this roster going to be addressed? We have a backup (at best) goalie that we are playing as a #1 going out there and consistently giving up 3, 4 and 5 goals a game and an AHL defense because most of our starters are injured. Taylor Fedun played one shift against Pittsburgh and got hurt and is on IR for 6-8 weeks along with Matt Tennyson, Zach Bogosian and Rasmus Ristolainen.

When are the flaws in this roster going to be addressed?

The Sabres recalled Casey Nelson and Kyle Criscuolo who has never played an NHL game. Also, Nick Baptiste has been demoted back to Rochester after failing to make an impression in 4 games. When are these prospects that Tim Murray so highly touted going to make an impact for the Sabres? How can Baptiste not make an impression? This team is terrible and it’s a prime place for a young player to make an impact. There are plenty of other teams that have young guys who come right in and look great and make an impact. You know what I think the answer is? Tim Murray was a bum and set this franchise back. He was supposedly a great talent evaluator, but I think this is horse crap. He was garbage and we are still living with is every time Lehner takes the ice.

Now, people are going to say, well what do you want them to do? How can the team get help on defense? I have a suggestion. Trade Sam Reinhart and Evander Kane for young promising defensemen, ship Robin Lehner to wherever they will give us a bag of pucks for him and bring up Linus Ulmark and give that kid a chance. Lehner is one of Tim Murray’s mistakes and he needs to be gone. We should have beaten Pittsburgh and we had a 3-1 lead. He gave up 4 goals in regulation and of course we lost in OT. Same thing against Montreal last Saturday. In both of these games our guys battled, hell Josh Gorges even got in a fight against his old team, and our goaltending is still letting us down. It is beyond frustrating and the fans have had enough of watching this guy act like a sieve. Get him outta here.

Tonight we have the Red Wings in Detroit. They aren’t playing great hockey and after 2 stinking OT losses and three days off, can we please come out with some fire and intensity and play with some urgency? I want these players to stand up for themselves. We are the laughing stock of the league right now and other teams are eyeing us to see who they can poach from our roster. I have heard that Kane is one of the prizes being sought. We should definitely move him for defensive help. I don’t understand how people can argue that we should maintain this roster as it is currently constructed and that includes keeping Reinhart, Kane and Lehner. Their stats are meaningless when we are consistently losing. The point of this is to win games. We aren’t doing it and this roster needs to be rearranged to get players in here who take accountability and have pride in their performances. There are no moral victories in Hockey. We need to win, and this team as it’s currently constructed, is not doing it. It’s getting to the point where this season will be lost. People say, yeah, but we’re still only 6 points out of a playoff spot. Really? We aren’t going anywhere until we start having better goaltending and defense and we start playing winning hockey.

Sabres vs. Red Wings, Tonight @ 7 PM, MSG

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Written by Philip Wilkins

Philip Wilkins

Philip Wilkins is a Baseball, Hockey and Football fan and an avid Orioles, Sabres and Bills watcher. He moved to Buffalo in 2009 and has an MBA from Canisius College. He has a BA from the University of Colorado- Boulder-Go Buffs!, and has been a Buffalo fan ever since NHL '94 and the 4 Bills Super Bowls. He also can’t wait until Ryan O’Reilly gets the “C” on his jersey.

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  • BuffaloGals

    Just because the Lehner trade was a bad trade doesn’t mean he’s a bad player. Clearly we shouldn’t have sent a first round pick for him, but are you going to ignore the ridiculous save he made when the game was 4-4? We lose in regulation instead of OT if not for that. And apart from the misplayed puck behind the net, the other goals weren’t his fault.

    You said yourself he’s playing behind an AHL defense. He’s not a superstar, but he’s an average starter.

  • Kurt Doerfel

    Totally agree! What can they do to the roster now?
    ship Robin Lehner to wherever they will give us a bag of pucks for him and bring up Linus Ulmark and give that kid a chance.!!!

    Linus is obviously the guy right now.

    Give some of the lesser paid guys some more roles. Get Girgensons and those guys on the power play. Take off Reinhart and Okposo from the dying struggling powerplay…. cmon. Just Do something please…

  • Mailman

    We should trade O’Reilly for a hornets nest and some red ants.

  • OldFirstWard

    “I have a suggestion. Trade Sam Reinhart and Evander Kane for young promising defensemen”
    Evander Kane should be the highest paid player on the team, not Eichel. Kane is power forward who needs a guy like Tavares feeding him. In fact, I would consider trading Eichel for the right deal, Kane needs to be signed.

    • Philip, Buffalo

      Honestly, I don’t know what Eichel would get you right now. Kane is the most valuable player on the roster and teams are probably hoping we just dump him off. I say we hold onto him until later in the year and then move him for a #1 D-man

      • BuffaloGals

        Kane will not fetch a #1 defenseman unless he’s packaged up with something else valuable. That’s not a knock on him, just a reality of the price of bringing in a big player.

        And Eichel’s trade value is still undoubtedly higher than Kane’s, even though it would be insane to entertain trade offers for him.

        • OldFirstWard

          Top draft picks don’t always pan out. Look at Edmonton, Boston, or slew of others. The Sabres made a huge mistake giving Eichel that contract. They should have signed him to a four-year deal and hedged their options. I’ve said all along that this guy is no superstar. Trade for Tavares and sign him. Kane needs a goal scoring setup center. Find him one now and get Kane signed. Management already blew an opportunity to sign him for a reasonable amount.

          • BuffaloGals

            You probably would have been ripping Tavares early in his career too. His first 3 years he averaged .83 points per game; Eichel is at .80. Tavares is going to get paid more than Eichel after his contract runs out this year, except at 27 that contract is going to take him until he’s in his mid 30s and well past his prime.

            Trading Eichel is insanity.

      • OldFirstWard

        NO WAY should Kane get traded. You can groom a defenseman but you can’t make a goal scorer. The Sabres have a goaltending problem that needs to get solved. The best defenseman in the league can’t cover for a goalie with fundamental weaknesses.

  • bburbs

    If you want to see excellent hockey, save your money by heading up to Dwyer Arena and watch the reenergized Niagara University Purple Eagles and their 180 degree turnaround after three losing seasons. Now coached by Geneseo alum and ex coach Jason Lammers the Purps are a hard skating aggressive team that is already receiving votes in the USCHO Hockey Poll. It is a shame that Buffalo sports fans put themselves through needless suffering at the hands of the Bills and Sabres when they could achieve some gratification by attending Niagara, Canisius, UB and Bona sports. It is also a shame that BUFFALO RISING does not cover or acknowledge these and the other Div II and III sports. I would challenge the writer and you readers to attend the Niagara Canisius home and home Hockey series December 8th at Dwyer and Dec 9th at the Harborcenter and see what a fine Hockey product these schools are offering.

    • Philip, Buffalo

      Hello, thank you for the comment. If you would like me to cover the hockey games please email me with the contact and ticketing information at philip@buffalorising.com. Thanks for reading and being a part of the conversation.

  • RayFinkle

    Buffalo sports are a lost cause, its never going to happen for either team. Spend your money elsewhere.

    Its very freeing to remove them from your life….