Though Evander Kane is clearly the one to watch—especially after yesterday’s report that the Pittsburgh Penguins were interested in him—the Buffalo Sabres have several players who could have different crests on their sweaters over the next few weeks. Craig Custance, in his Trade Deadline Primer for The Athletic, reports that the Sabres are also receiving interest in Benoit Pouliot, Johan Larsson and Jacob Josefson.
Pouliot has long been expected to make a big impact in the league, but after his latest disappointing season in Edmonton was bought out in the summer. Buffalo jumped on the chance to bring in the fourth-overall pick from 2005, and signed him to a one-year $1.15MM contract on July 1st. Pouliot has been better than last season, with 11 points in 39 games, but that’s not saying much. The 31-year old has been killing penalties for the Sabres, and still brings fine possession numbers, but there isn’t a lot to be excited about even with his relatively low salary.
Larsson and Josefson bring much of the same, just in younger bodies. With six and three points respectively, neither is going to change the offensive outlook of an acquiring team. What they can do, is give you responsible minutes on the fourth line and penalty kill, while providing some depth down the middle. Both can play center reasonably well, though neither are very good in the faceoff dot.
In all, every player not named Jack Eichel is likely available for the right price in Buffalo. The problem is there isn’t a lot of value in many of them, because of either poor performance, age or salary. Kane remains their big chip to make a splash at the deadline, but expect them to be very busy selling off smaller pieces over the next few weeks.