The sabres fanbase, myself included, has attachments to many players on thw current roster for reasons other than talent. Being from Angola, NY and going to the same high school as patrick kaleta, I obviously love seeing him on the squad. Nathan Gerbe is the personification of perseverance and is known for giving his all every night. But do they fit on the newly minted roster? While regier clearly isnt finished its worth taking a look at how things may work out come october.
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Three centers I see being pretty much set in stone foe the start of the season are Ennis, Hodgson, and McCormick. I can see either grigorenko or girgensons making the squad out of camp but for the sake of argument ill leave them out of my scenario. My top lines as it sits would consist of Stafford, Ennis, Foligno and Vanek, Hodgson, Pominville. Third line being Ott, Adam, Leino and the fourth being Scott, McCormick, Tropp.
The infusion of youth will bring a new energy to a team that was nearly flat-lining last season. Tropp and Foligno played electrifying hockey last season and I believe given the opportunity to play his way back in Adam could still prove to be a solid player. So where does this leave the under-sized under achiever and the often injured penalty magnet? My answer would have to be either Rochester or the press box. Could regier include them in a trade? Possibly but their value would be minimal at best.
While you cant argue the work ethic and dedication of either player, you have to look at the downside. Gerbe scores at the pace of a solid third line supporter but his size isnt optimal for that role. Kaleta is known for his huge hits and wreckless abandon but between his inability to play a full season and the referees taking special notice of him on the ice, his game is far less effective now.
These guys are fan favorites for a reason, they can be electrifying players but with the talented youngsters coming up its hard to justify giving either player a spot on the roster as it sits. Given the possibility of further trades for forwards given the abundance of blueliners it gets harder and harder to see these two fan favorites making the cut.
What do you think? Leave me feedback in the comments.
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