This will be a brief series detailing the top 10 most frustrating Buffalo Sabres players since the last lockout. Here is #6, in my opinion…with Max Afinogenov at #10, Craig Rivet at #9, Ales Kotalik at #8, Andrej Sekera at #7, Shaone Morrisonn at #6, Paul Gaustad at #5, Ryan Miller at #4, Derek Roy at #3, Tim Connolly at #2, and…lastly…
#1 – TRADE DEADLINE BUSTS
Zubrus was traded to Buffalo from Washington in 2007 for Jiri Novotny and a 1st round draft pick. Zubrus fared decently, chipping in 8 points in 19 regular season games, and 8 points in 15 playoff games. Ultimately, he was a disappointment for not being the final piece that the Sabres needed to reach the Stanley Cup Finals, as Buffalo was knocked out 4-1 by Ottawa in the Eastern Conference finals. Zubrus promptly left the team for New Jersey.
Bernier was a 1st round draft pick by San Jose in 2003, and came to the NHL amid much hype. He was traded to Buffalo in 2008 along with a 1st round draft pick in exchange for All-Star Defenseman Brian Campbell. Campbell was, and has been, a tough loss for the Sabres.
Bernier started off well, with 3 points in his first game with Buffalo, immediately gaining fanfare. Alas, he only chipped in 6 more points in his final 16 games, before bolting to Vancouver. There is a silver lining behind this trade, as Tyler Myers ended up being the 1st round draft pick the Sabres received. So, we basically traded Brian Campbell for Tyler Myers.
Unfortunately, Bernier ended up being the goat who cost the New Jersey Devils the 2012 Stanley Cup, as the Los Angeles Kings scored 3 goals after Bernier took a 5-minute boarding major penalty. It is too bad, as Bernier performed extremely well throughout the playoffs.
Moore was traded to Buffalo by Toronto for a 2nd round draft pick. At the time of being traded, Moore had reached career highs in goals, assists, and points. That trend did not continue with the Sabres; Moore posted a mediocre 4 points in 18 games, as Buffalo missed the playoffs. Moore left and joined the Florida Panthers the following season.
Torres was obtained by the Sabres in 2010 in exchange for Nathan Paetsch and a 2nd round pick. Torres notched a pathetic 5 points in 14 games for Buffalo, despite posting 31 points in 60 games for Columbus prior to the trade. His poor play carried over into the playoffs against Boston, and he was quickly benched.
Torres has moved on since to become a cheap-shot artist and dirty player, racking up 31 games worth of suspensions, with questionable hits to Marian Hossa, Nate Prosser, Brent Seabrook (twice), and Jordan Eberle.
Boyes arguably takes the cake among the trade deadline disappointments. A former 1st round draft pick, and 40 goal scorer, Boyes was traded by St. Louis in 2011 for a 2nd round draft pick. Boyes played well initially, with 14 points in 21 regular season games. He then vanished off the face of the earth in the playoffs, with one point in 7 games against Philadelphia. The Sabres had high hopes that Boyes would rekindle his former scoring touch that he had with the Blues.
Yet, the play of Boyes worsened in the following season, and was often painful to watch. He finished with 23 points in 65 games, and was a ghost on the ice most nights, only re-appearing in shootouts, where he was a dynamo.