Drew Stafford is an assistant captain for the Buffalo Sabres – but does he deserve to hold that honor?
When the team started in Europe last season, there was a big to do about who was going to be name captain to lead the troops onto the ice – Jason Pominville was that guy. Now the topic of another article is Lindy made that decision based on the fact that Pominville has the room, but isn’t the type to stand up to Lindy when need be, that Pominville is nothing more than a puppet for Lindy Ruff and his system. I have no problems with Pominville in that role.
What I do have a problem with is the fact that Drew Stafford skates out onto the ice for every game with an A on his sweater.
His career numbers don’t match up with the fact that he was the 13th overall selection in the 2004 draft. He isn’t a serious voice in the locker room, and his on ice dedication is not what the Buffalo Sabres need in an assistance captain.
I have a hard time understanding how someone who can publically come out and say it took them five years to take the game seriously has earned the right to wear a letter on the front of his sweater. It’s a good thing that Stafford took his game seriously for the first time in a contract year, and now has nothing to show for it – other than 4 million dollars guaranteed every year.
Drafted 13th overall in the 2004 draft – the same year as Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin. Only three players drafted above Stafford that year have never made it to the NHL or have played fewer than 100 games.
Only Andrew Ladd – outside of Ovechkin and Malkin who went number one and two that year, has risen high enough within the organization to get tagged with a letter on his sweater. Ladd has played in more games (NHL) and gone through more turmoil (trades and a franchise move) than Drew Stafford – as is a part of a veteran corp on a young Winnipeg Jets team trying to find their way.
Drew Stafford is coasting through his career here in Buffalo, as a member of the Buffalo Sabres, and despite his funny demeanor off the ice, has shown little committment to the leadership of this team.
There has been plenty of finger pointing around this organization lately as to who is to blame for the organizations woes, Terry Pegula, Ted Black, Lindy Ruff, and Darcy Regier are not exempt from that either – maybe the one ice leadership is one start to solving the problems revolving around the Buffalo Sabres – and putting the leadership in the right places.