Buffalo has not had a captain as heartfelt as Chris Drury since Pat LaFontaine played here. Any interview you watch, you'll hear "us", "team", "we". Also, it's been a long time since I've heard a professional athlete in Buffalo speak about the city in the way Drury has in his time here. Drury said it's great to see those basketball nets vacant, and all the kids playing street hockey in the street. It's true, i've never seen so many hockey nets in my life. Drury seems to be a true man, loyal to his team, family, and also to the community he plays for. He works harder then anyone on the ice, and is often rewarded for that by scoring clutch goals in huge situations. When times like that arise, the game seems to slow down for him. Everyone presses, while Drury, calmly gathers the puck and picks his spot, bang, overtime, or game over.
My gut tells me that money will not be the biggest issue in this pursuit. I think stability will override everything else. Drury will stay, Briere will leave. It's not as easy as people think and say with just "dumping" players. Spacek still has two years left on his contract. If you want to trade him, who will want him? He was non-existent on the power play, and suspect defensively. Having a partner like Chris Pronger in Edmonton may have elevated his play to the point where teams looked at Spacek as more then he really is....average. Many of the present sabres are signed. The only way to create room is going to be via trade, or letting Numminen go, and also parting with Adam Mair. They already parted ways with Biron freeing up more money. If the Sabres keep both, Darcy Regier will have to be extremely crafty, and fans may see more than one fan favorite leave in order to keep Drury and Briere.