One of the newest members of the Buffalo Sabres organization is center Sam Reinhart, drafted by the Sabres just over a week ago in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. But who exactly is Sam Reinhart, you ask? And what’s he going to do for Buffalo? Well, if you’re looking to learn more about one of the Sabres’ newcomers, look no further — here’s a primer on all things Sam Reinhart.
Sam Reinhart is an 18-year-old center who has spent the past three seasons with the Kootenay Ice of the Western Hockey League. The WHL’s website lists Reinhart at 6’1″ and 183 pounds.
He’s a Vancouver native who has spent much of the past few years playing in Western Canada, including with the Hollyburn Huskies Bantam A1-T1 of the PCBHL and the Vancouver NW Giants of the BCMML prior to his time in Kootenay.
This season, Reinhart racked up 105 points (36-69) in 60 regular season games. He finished the year tied for fifth in the league in points scoring and led Kootenay in points and assists; only right winger Jaedon Descheneau had more goals (44).
When all was said and done, Reinhart earned the WHL’s Player of the Year award as well as being named the league’s Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year. Previous honors include being named league Rookie of the Year in 2012 and being named to the WHL Second All-Star Team in 2013.
He also has experience on the international stage, having captained a gold medal-winning team at the 2012 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament and the 2013 U-18 World Championship.
Kris Baker of SabresProspects.com notes Reinhart’s power play action and defensive discipline, as well as his versatility and three-zone aptitude.
Sam is the most recent of three Reinhart brothers to be drafted into the NHL — and the highest-drafted of them all.
Griffin Reinhart, 20, was selected 4th overall in 2012 by the New York Islanders. The defenseman just finished up his fourth full season with the WHL’s Edmonton Oil Kings, capping off his junior hockey career with a Memorial Cup Championship. This October, he’ll vie for a spot in the Islanders lineup to see the first NHL action of his career.
Max Reinhart, 22, was selected 64th overall in 2010 by the Calgary Flames. After a WHL career with Kootenay, Max has flip-flopped the past few years between the NHL and the AHL. This past season, the center had 63 points in 66 games with Abbotsford and two points in eight games with Calgary.
In addition, their father also has some history with the NHL. Paul Reinhart was drafted 12th overall by the Atlanta Flames in 1979. A defenseman, he played with Atlanta and then Calgary for nine seasons before spending two years with the Vancouver Canucks organization until 1990.
WHLers AND THE DRAFT
Reinhart was the first of 37 Western Hockey League players to be picked in the 2014 NHL Draft, marking the second time in the last three years that a WHLer was slotted second-overall (Ryan Murray, 2012).
Only Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has gone higher in terms of WHLers, going first overall to Edmonton in 2011.
He was one of two WHLers selected by the Buffalo Sabres this year, the other being Brycen Martin of the Swift Current Broncos (74th overall).
FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE…..
- Prior to the 2014 NHL Draft, Sam Reinhart sat down with Leafs TV.
- Here’s a highlight reel package via Youtube.
- TSN did a feature on Sam Reinhart during the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championships.
- Prospect profile from WHL.ca
- WHL highlights from Reinhart’s stint as Player of the Week (February)
- A November 13th fight against Josh Morrissey