Every NHL team’s roster has a few players whose success does not always light up the stat sheet. Here are three Buffalo Sabres who fit that mold.
It is so easy to get caught up in statistics. And we are all guilty of it, myself included. So there are a few current Buffalo Sabres who serve the team well, yet if you hopped over to Hockey-Reference, their overall stats are nothing spectacular.
So today, we are discussing three Sabres who have played so well that they may have even generated consideration for an award or two at one point or another in their career. Yet, when you look at the small picture of statistics, you are more likely to give the following players the infamous bust label.
Who are the three most underrated players in Buffalo? Keep reading to find out.
Your top three most underrated Buffalo Sabres in 2022-23: Player #1 – Rasmus Asplund, C/RW
In 137 career games, Asplund has just 41 points and 25 goals. These numbers prove that he will never find himself on the top scoring lines of any NHL team. Even last season’s expansion team, the Seattle Kraken, wouldn’t have dared to trust Asplund with much offense.
But when you watch Asplund’s game closely, you will notice that he plays defense so well that some of his limited offensive production comes from those plays that he makes on defense. One example that really jumped out includes a shorthanded goal he scored against the Los Angeles Kings on October 31st.
During the play, Asplund broke up a pass, took control of the puck, and outpaced both the opposing Kings and even his own teammates to put the Buffalo Sabres up 1-0 early in the second period. This is just one of a few sample sizes in which Asplund can hurt an opponent.
Head coach Don Granato’s high-pressure system also plays well into Asplund’s hands, allowing him to let loose on the forecheck. This allows Asplund to give his line mates a chance to create something offensively, but there are also times where he can also generate a play.
No, it rarely translates into a goal or an assist for himself. But Asplund, given his puck and sound vision, can also be the catalyst for setting a play in motion on offense. And this makes him valuable on the lower lines.