Oct 22, 2013; Uniondale, NY, USA; Vancouver Canucks right wing Jannik Hansen (36) controls the puck in front of New York Islanders left wing Matt Moulson (26) during the first period of a game at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres Trade Thomas Vanek to the New York Islanders for Matt Moulson

Oct 19, 2013; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Thomas Vanek (26) in play during the game against the Colorado Avalanche at First Niagara Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Those of you Buffalo Sabres fans who kept Tweeting, “Do something, Darcy,” have finally gotten your wish.

Word on the street is that the Sabres have traded their home captain, Thomas Vanek, to the New York Islanders for Matt Moulson and first (2014) and second (2015) round draft picks.

Here’s the first I heard of this news:


 I had literally just finished responding to a fan’s question about a possible coaching scenario when that Tweet from WGR 550 flashed in front of my eyes.  I had to do a double-take; who the hell was expecting THAT to appear on Twitter at eight-oh-something on a Sunday evening?

There is no doubt that in my mind that Vanek had already resigned himself to being an ex-Sabre once this season ended.  Sure, he is the team’s leading scorer, but he has shown little to no passion out on the ice, and has certainly done nothing to try and put this team on his shoulders and carry them like a superstar should.  Obviously, the Sabres decided to move him while they could still get some value out of him – and value they got.

Moulson currently has a line of 6-3-9 in 11 games for the Islanders, which instantly makes him the Sabres’ leading scorer.  A first-round draft pick this year will also give the Sabres yet another year in which they draft twice in the first round, and given how well that worked out for this team during the previous draft, you have to think that, upon first inspection, the Sabres got the better end of this deal.  Time will tell, and we’ll be providing more complete coverage of this trade in the days to come, but for a team that is the midst of a rebuild, this deal could pay off huge dividends in the years to come.

Tags: Buffalo Sabres Thomas Vanek

  • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

    Sorry it was a bit sloppy at first, folks – I was trying to get this out in a rush! I have edited it about seven times!

    • Anthony

      Islanders didn’t get robbed, the have enough top flight prospects already so the picks don’t hurt at all other than losing bargaining chips to trade for a goalie…I just hope Vanek likes it here or has verbally agreed to a extension atleast so its not another Ryan Smyth deal again.

      • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

        I assume you’re responding to Dano up there? I definitely don’t think the Islanders got robbed – Vanek could easily go for 70-80+ alongside Tavares. However, if both of these guys walk at the end of the season, the Sabres at least get to keep the draft picks.

        • [email protected]

          I think whether or not Vanek resigns will determine who got the better deal. Is it possible that before the Islanders executed the trade they could have asked Vanek if he would be willing to resign? I don’t know how the trading process works honestly.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            Me neither. Either the Islanders are going “all-in” for a shot at the Cup this year, or they just feel comfortable with the idea that Vanek will want to stay. I saw a Tweet that said there had be no contract extension offered to Vanek and that he will be a UFA at the end of the season.

          • Jes

            what? that’s insane but he’s not that much of a rental since more than 70 games remain. could develop some instant chemistry with Tavares and just beat up on teams in the playoffs, and decide to resign in playoffs like Regher did with the Kings.

            If the Isles Win the Cup no matter if he leaves via free agency the Isles win the trade.

            Surprised it wasn’t a Miller + Vanek deal. Miller would easily upgrade that goaltending situation. Probably would’ve just been Moulson and two 1st round draft picks, instead of Moulson a 1st and a 2nd. We won’t get much for Miller anymore that’s for sure.

          • [email protected]

            Oh, well if it was on Twitter it MUST be true. Lol, just messing with you. If that turns out to be true though, is Vanek the player they wanted and truly gives them the best odds at winning a cup this year? Or is Vanek the best they could get with the assets they were willing to give up? This trade really came out of nowhere and has caused a lot of questions to form in my mind.

          • Dano

            Basically, the GM’s do the talking. If a player has a NTC/NMC the GM will disclose ‘ Hey , would you waive your clause to go to team-X ‘. Contract extensions dont happen until the player moves OR if a GM says ‘ Team-x wants you and they are speaking of an extension.. ‘.

            Teams cant really talk to another teams players until their contracts expire ( Or so the ‘ rules ‘ say ‘ ).

            Im willing to bet more is said though.

          • [email protected]

            Don’t players have agents as well? So can one agent talk to another agent, then pass that info along to the GMs? If this is wrong, I apologize. Like I said I am not sure how stuff like this goes down.

          • Dano

            I believe the agents are the direct representatives of the players. If a GM from a team isnt allowed to talk to a player, I dont believe they can talk to their agent either.

            A bunch of things changed over the years through the collective bargaining agreements. Im going off of what they were in 2003 before the second to last lockout.

  • Vic Soga

    All the best for Vanek. He will do well with Tavares. Now can Moulson play without Tavares on the PP?

  • Brett

    Good trade for the Sabres in terms of the future. But as an Islander fan, I can tell you that I have real concerns whether Matt Moulson can be effective with his buddy JT.

  • Crystal Stocker

    Giving up already?

  • Kevin

    How long is Moulson’s contract? The first is nice, but expected. I don’t think DR would have made the trade without getting one in return. The 2nd we most likely forget about seeing is that its not until its not until 2015.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Moulson is an FA after this year

      • Jes

        Yup CC he’s UFA. We’ll be paying him $3 mill this year (Some of it gone) and $3.9 million next year. How does cap hit work? It always ends up being less for some reason.

        • Dano

          Actually, he will earn 3million with Buffalo this season ( if hes not gone by the deadline ) and nothing from us next year.

  • Dano

    My Take :

    I HATE Regier and cant see how he still has a job.. then something like this comes along. Regier absolutely ROBBED the Islanders! He should be incarcerated for such a felonious heist!

    *IF* he can get a return like this for Miller..

    Talk about being torn.

    • Jes

      Naw bro they never got “Robbed.” NYI gave up a guy who basically got made by Tavares. I doubt he does as good without him, CoHo is good but not Tavares good. But being possibly the only scorer on a team, Moulson could just light it up. Wonder how good Vanek can be with a superstar? If he can get like 85-90 points I think the Isles fleeced us.

      • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

        Agreed. I hope Moulson rises to the occasion, something Vanek was not willing to do (apparently).

      • Dano

        Vanek was walking. In return we snagged a good rental whom we can always trade away at the deadline.. heaven forbid we can snag a roster player or a second for Moulson..

        We have a first and a 15/second rounder for Vanek plus an asset.

        The Isles had 12million in space before they snagged Vanek. Im sure they can afford to resign him and being honest.. His time in Buffalo was done. Hes not going to put up 80-90 points this year, 1/8th of the season is already gone.

        • Jacob Breunig

          I don’t see vanek staying in ny unless they make a good playoff run, wouldn’t be surprised if he takes a nice cut to go home and play with pommer next year

  • qwicwted

    As much as everyone likes to blast Darcy, he does get the most bang for his buck. So much for GM’s not wanting to do business with him. When you have something someone wants, then a trade is possible. Now I’d like to see what he can do with Miller.
    The thing about Moulson is he is a hard worker, is a character guy and can be a leader that the Sabres can look to. I like the fact that we are getting draft picks.

  • Jes

    Last years draft was so deep Richard that I highly doubt the Sabres end up with two “Deep” picks like they did last year.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      True – no doubt this year is not as deep. Still – Vanek was going to walk anyway, so at least the Sabres get something in return. Like to see them try and re-sign Moulson, but I put those odds at 20% or lower.

      • Jes

        yup same here unless he plays absolutely bananas then he’s gone come his UFA year.

        • [email protected]

          Why don’t you think we will re-sign him? I mean, it comes down to how he plays with the rest of the team and we won’t have those answers until he gets a bunch of games under his belt as a Sabre.

    • Jacob Breunig

      I would love for buffalo to trade up, if not first already, to get Sam Reinhart, then next year, package their three 2nd rounders, or whatever they get for millsey for Connor mcdavid

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  • Yannick Cloutier

    Yeah, yeah good trade, but why a 2014 1st rounder??? I’d rather have 2015 when i look at those prospects in the 2014 draft…