The Sabres have lost a lot in the last few years to free agency, this year, the list does not look so daunting:
Dominic Moore was acquired by the team at the deadline to help with overall team toughness and faceoff help. If the price is right, I would not mind seeing him stay on here in Buffalo, his valuable time in the league, even though it was with the step-children in Toronto will help groom future prospects as they come up from Portland, and the Sabres can always use help on faceoffs.
Even Max admits that is time to go. Still able to play the game, Max could find his way back to Russia to play in the KHL, if no one in the NHL signs him up.
Some would consider him a fan favorite; others would consider him nothing more than a pest. Some, like Jarkko Ruutu might consider him lunch, but if the Sabres want to get tougher as well as getting better, they will look to a more talented version of a tough guy, someone who can help out more offensively or defensively.
Heading into his sixth season, and on his third team, the well travelled Matt Ellis has really shown a bright light on a faily dismal season. Ellis has been a great utility player who has fit in and functioned well with the team. If the Sabres can come to term with the young player, he would be a great edition to the permanent lineup. Surrounded by the right group of stars and prospects, the potential for more is there.
Jasoslav Spacek has seen ups and down on his three year stint here in Buffalo. He caught the ire of many fans as he underperformed in the first year of his deal. Shining in his second, and having an alright third year, with the possible retirement of Teppo Numinnen imminent, keeping Spacek on the blue line might be an important thing to do, as he could provide a solid anchor for an often faltering blue line.
Teppo has shown the physical and emotional toughness for a guy who has played for teams that no longer exist in the NHL, yet he continues to perform. Stuck on a Buffalo team now a little deeper on talent along the blue line, especially with the emergence of Chris Butler, another team or retirement may await the veteran blue liner. Sitting some of the remaining games may have been the sign of things to come.
Traded for as an insurance policy when star goaltender Ryan Miller went out with an ankle injury – Tellqvist served his purpose, and served it well. What would be best for Mikael is signing with a team that could use him as a backup properly, or even start; but I would not mind seeing the Sabres come to terms with the goaltender, and offering Lalime as a trade in an effort to improve beyond the draft.