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2010/11 Buffalo Sabres

Posted 12:51 PM ET | Comments 8
The playoffs are about to start, but it is never too early to look ahead to next year, especially depending on what happens in the playoffs, so here's my take on what to do with the Sabres roster next season.

NOTE: There will be no speculation of trades in this post, just salary figures on who is committed to contracts and assumptions of what some Free Agent re-signings might cost.

If we look at the players we have committed to contracts next season, we start off with a base cap-hit of 44.435M (using NHL Numbers for all figures). The current cap ceiling appears to be 57.7M.

We currently have 12 Free Agents, of which 4 are Restricted (some AHL players are left out of this total). I would suggest we re-sign our 3 RFAs to slight increases (Kennedy from .635 to 1M, Kaleta from .522 to 1M, Mancari from .575 to .85, and Weber to .9 from .75).

Of the remaining 8 Free Agents (Grier, Mair, Ellis, Torres, McCormick, Lydman, Tallinder and Lalime), I would prefer we only re-sign Torres (3M) and McCormick (who'd remain in the AHL most likely). I wouldn't mind Grier coming back, but the 1M+ salary could be used elsewhere.

With those signings, it leaves us with 13 Forwards and 6 Defensemen:

Vanek, Pomminville, Connolly, Roy, Hecht, Gaustad, Stafford, Gerbe, Ennis, Mancari, Kennedy, Torres, Kaleta
Rivet, Montador, Sekera, Myers, Butler, Weber

With all those salaries added up, and guesses to Free Agent re-signings (not going outside the organization, too much speculation there), this totals 51.485M, leaving us just over 6M to sign a seventh defenseman and a backup goalie.

That's a lot of wiggle room to:
- sign a significant Free Agent (plus the flexibility of not re-signing Torres frees up 2.75M+ in salary for a bigger splash)
- removes a lot (but not all) junk from the roster (Grier, Mair, Ellis, Tallinder, Lydman, Lalime)
- helps keep our "core" together.

Opinions are welcome, trolls will be ignored.

Thanks for stopping by!
Filed Under:   Buffalo   Sabres  
April 14, 2010 1:27 PM ET | Delete
I have to agree that Grier should not be resigned. He is looking slow and disinterested out there to me. Here's hoping he sees the post season as his last chance and finds another gear.I do think we bring back Tallinder, not Lydman as well. Two or three years, similar salary, keep him with the monster as he develops.
April 14, 2010 2:10 PM ET | Delete
A year ago I was screaming for Hanks head. If he comes back it better be a short term with minimal increase. Lydman has been steadier but could be improved upon. I'd trade his rights for a late rounder if possible. Ellis I'd keep in the PB. He works hard and doesn't take the penalties Mair does. Lalime no way. Grier nope. Too many up an comers that are better.
April 14, 2010 4:16 PM ET | Delete
April 15, 2010 1:21 PM ET | Delete
like patty k. at $1m...tk prob less...you can have mancari, twice...adam mair was waived, and he can leave at the end of the season...want grier back...want ellis too...rock-solid players for the bottom-six...highly doubt torres will be back
April 15, 2010 1:24 PM ET | Delete
hank can go...i like lydman...monty's here for another year, and i like that...kinda on the fence with rivet...wouldn't be opposed to trading him if they can replace him...they can put his $3.5m towards signing ufa anton volchenkov...would love to see a myers/volchenkov top-pairing...i think miller would too ;)
April 15, 2010 1:27 PM ET | Delete
still think they need to bolster the center position...still not sold on roy...or connolly, for that matter...maybe they could pluck dubi from the rags...all-in-all a top-six forward and a top-pairing d-man (dubi and volchenkov would be work for me) should really solidify this team...in my humble opinion
April 15, 2010 1:29 PM ET | Delete
btw...i'm still not on-board with "the core"...not expecting too much from them except for pomminville and connolly...not sure what vanek will do, but we all know his capabilities...of "the core" those are the only three i'd like to see retained for next season
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