Mar 17, 2014; Tampa, FL, USA; former Tampa Bay Lightning former left wing Dave Andreychuk (5) is introduced before the game as they honor the 2004 Standley Cub champions against the Vancouver Canucks at Tampa Bay Times Forum. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres History: Who Wore It, Number 52

We continue our series about Buffalo Sabres history, with each day’s post highlighting a player to have worn the subsequent jersey number with the Buffalo Sabres. This series is not designed to say that any player is the ‘best’ to have worn that jersey number, but rather to allow fans to get a taste of the team’s history and learn more about some of the players in it.

Dave Andreychuk is one of three players in Sabres history to wear jersey number 52; in fact, he was the first, long before the days of Craig Rivet or Alexander Sulzer.

Andreychuk’s NHL career saw him play for six different NHL clubs. He played with the Sabres for two stints; the first, from 1982 until 1993, and the second for the 2000-2001 season. Overall, he played over 1600 career NHL games before ultimately hanging up the skates in 2006. Since his retirement, he’s worked with the Lightning in several areas and was inducted into the Sabres Hall of Fame in 2008.

This past April, the Lightning unveiled a statue of Andreychuk in front of the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

Andreychuk, now 50, was a left winger who was originally drafted by the Sabres in 1982, with the 16th overall pick. The Hamilton native came out of three seasons with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals before joining the Sabres in 1982. He would play exclusively with the Sabres until being traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs in February 1993, in exchange for Grant Fuhr and a draft pick (Kevin Popp).

He’d go on to play parts of three seasons in Toronto before being traded to the New Jersey Devils in 1996. Parts of four seasons in New Jersey, then it was off to Boston for 63 games. March 2000 saw Andreychuk traded along with Ray Bourque, sent to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for a package that included Martin Grenier, Samuel Pahlsson and Brian Rolston.

But he played just 14 games with the Avalanche before signing with the Sabres for the 2000-2001 season. After a year in Buffalo, he spent the last four seasons of his career with the Lightning before being waived in 2006.

Overall, Andreychuk played 888 games in a Sabres uniform (regular season and playoffs). He had 381 goals and 458 assists for a total of 839 points in his time with Buffalo. He was inducted into the Sabres Hall of Fame in 2008 but has been notably excluded from the Hockey Hall of Fame, raising many eyebrows around the hockey world. Could his chance be coming soon?

Other players to wear #52 for the Sabres: Alexander Sulzer, Craig Rivet

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