Jun 17, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Bruins left wing Daniel Paille (20) celebrates after scoring a goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during the second period in game three of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Michael Ivins-USA TODAY Sports

Daily Poll: Did The Buffalo Sabres Really Make A Mistake By Trading Daniel Paille?

When it rains, it pours.

As tiresome as the above idiom may be, you have to admit: it has become common place because it contains at least a nugget of truth.  Even if bad things really don’t get delivered in clusters, the human mind tends to dwell on the negative if given the chance, so when something bad happens – say, watching your favorite NHL team miss the playoffs for the third consecutive year – you start to hone in on the more disappointing aspects of the world around you.

Case in point: the playoff success of Daniel Paille.  Buffalo Sabres fans look at how well he is doing with the Bruins (4 goals, 4 assists, solid defensive play, and the chance to win a second Stanley Cup) and pine for what-could-have been.  Even our own Tim Redinger lamented that Paille’s trade lends credence to the argument that ” Darcy Regier makes trades sometimes that cost the Buffalo Sabres.”

But is this really the case?  Did trading Paille cost the Buffalo Sabres much of anything, aside from the knee-jerk reactions fans are having to see Paille on hockey’s biggest stage?

For starters, Paille’s numbers while in Buffalo were not overly impressive: his best year produced 35 points in 77 games, but his production declined to 27 points the next season and he posted a +/- of zero that year (stats courtesy of Yahoo Sports).  He was mostly a third-line player who could go long stretches of time without a point, and when the Sabres resigned Jason Pominville and Ryan Miller to hefty contracts in the summer of 2009, they needed to clear some cap space.  A player like Paille was an obvious choice, so off he went.

Did Paille’s career explode while in Boston?  Frankly, no.  His best season, points-wise?  19 points, with a -4 rating.  And 8 points in this year’s playoffs?  Thirty-eight players had more than that, many of them on teams that only lasted 1-2 rounds.   Paille’s contributions have been mostly defensive work on Boston’s third and fourth lines – not exactly irreplaceable material.

To me, the only complaint that can be made is that the Sabres traded ANYONE to a division rival, much less the Bruins, who the Sabres should never ever ever ever ever even talk to – mature, I know!

So: was the trade of Daniel Paille to the Boston Bruins really a mistake?  Be honest!

Did the Sabres really make a mistake by trading Daniel Paille?

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Tags: Buffalo Sabres Daniel Paille

  • Kevin

    I’m with you, never trade to a division foe. Quite frankly other than news fodder, he is predominately a 4th line player and always will be. Take away the glitter of the SCF and we would not be having this discussion.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Thank you for hitting the nail on the head! I usually come up with polls just to see who thinks what, but this time I was pretty biased on the “This is a non-issue” end of the spectrum.

  • Josh Doan

    I’m not that big into the division theory. You get the best deal to make your team better. If you think you win a trade you make your team better and make them worse. In most cases I would think along the lines of I took a better player/s from them. (Not in this case so much as it was for picks)

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      I guess I’m of the mind that you often don’t know what is going to happen down the line – like this case, for example – so better to avoid the chances of making a divisional rival better. Plus, often times a player who gets traded has extra motivation when he plays against the team that traded him, so why give him so many times to burn you? Could be just me, though! Thanks!

      • Josh Doan

        That’s fair. Could be a two way street though! Definitely worth the discussion either way.

  • Craig C.

    My take is simply that Paille is just one of many players who played under Lindy Ruff and thus had his offensive production minimized while here.

  • qwksndmonster

    Paille is a good 4th liner and a great depth guy to have. Due to how high the Sabres drafted him, I don’t think he could ever be a role player in Buffalo. Expectations were just to high for him.

    @Craig: Paille had his best offensive production under Lindy Ruff. I’d love to hear your list of players that left Lindy to have offensive explosions, but I’d rather just listen to Justin Bieber.

    Gotta love the perpetuation of Lindy myths even after he’s gone.