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.
As we get further up in the numbers, there’s generally fewer and fewer players to have worn each number. Today takes us to jersey number 53, which has been worn by just one player in Sabres history; the same can be said of number 54, which we’ll discuss in tomorrow’s post.
Mark Pysyk is the only player to wear #53 in the Buffalo blue & gold. He switched to #3 this past season, but wore 53 for 19 games with the Sabres during the 2012-13 season.
Pysyk, 22, has spent the last two seasons with the Sabres and the Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League. Prior to that, he spent parts of five seasons with the WHL’s Edmonton Oil Kings. He was captain of the Oil Kings for part of his time there and led them to the WHL championship in 2012.
Pysyk was drafted by the Sabres in 2010, picked up with the 23rd overall selection.
He began his pro career in Rochester, spending most of the 2012-13 season there. But he joined the Sabres when the NHL lockout ended, and ultimately played 19 games with the team. He had five points, adding an additional 18 with the Amerks.
This past season really saw Pysyk make a mark for himself in the NHL. He played 44 games with the Sabres and was sent down to Rochester a handful of times, playing 31 games with the Amerks. He had seven points at the NHL level and 12 at the AHL level. He also appeared in five playoff games with the Amerks, racking up 14 penalty minutes.
So where will Pysyk end up this season — with the Amerks, or in Buffalo with the Sabres? Of course there’s always the possibility that he splits the season again, but what do you think?
Other players to wear #53 for the Sabres: None.