Many in Buffalo are still wondering, why in the world are Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek still on this team? Well it's not an easy question to answer. There is little logical sense to keeping to aging stars with only a year left on their contracts for a team that has publicly said that it is time for a rebuild. Time for a rebuild means tearing down the core that you previously had and replacing it with a new one. Darcy Regier has set up a new core to put in place. Youngsters Zemgus Girgensons, Mikhail Grigorenko, Joel Armia, and Johan Larsson round out a good group of forward prospects who all have the talent to be great, but they are unproven. That is why the thought of a rebuild seems like it is just the right time. Letting these young guys grow together and play at such a young age can give them the experience they will need when the team is ready to make a run 3 or 4 years down the road and can point out who will not be NHL players, that way we don't have to drag the fans along for 2 or 3 years saying this guy can be good, but is not ready a.k.a Luke Adam for the last 4 years. And with guys like Girgensons publicly saying they want to be a leader, it limits their ability to do that when Vanek and Miller are still here and seen as the leaders.
Defense man wise, their is a lot more depth. Especially after drafting 2 first rounders in Ristolanien and Zadorov in this past draft. Also, waiting to get a crack at the NHL roster are prospects Brayden McNabb, Jake McCabe, Mark Pysyk, and Chad Ruwedhel. Adding vets like Alex Sulzer and Henrik Tallinder are the opposite of what Darcy said the direction was. Adding these vets guarantees you less young defenseman in the lineup and practicing with the team as a possible 7th. Instead of room for 3 or 4, theres now room for just 1 or 2.
Darcy continues to say one thing and do the other. He's lucky to still be GM and if he thinks his popularity sucks now, it dosen't help to be telling your fans one thing and do the other. That breaks down the trust your fans have in you which is very low to begin with. Darcy needs to stick to the rebuilding plan through and through and if this 3 attempt at a core fails, he better damn well have his bags packed.