Buffalo Sabres forward Tyson Jost looks like he finally found a role in the NHL. But will he stave off competition from upcoming prospects?
Few surprised us more than Tyson Jost last season, as he joined the Buffalo Sabres as a waiver claim. A former first round pick, Jost never lived to his lofty expectations out west as a member of the Colorado Avalanche, and later, the Minnesota Wild, and his career looked as though it were locked in a downward spiral.
Yet the “Don Granato Effect” gave us positive returns regarding Jost. Before he came to the Queen City, Jost played the game scared, afraid to make too many mistakes. Of course, there are more than a few Sabres who can relate to that before Granato came along, like Rasmus Dahlin, for example.
Granato is known for letting his players go out and play their game, and who cares if they make a few mistakes? The method has worked with players like Dahlin, who fell just short of becoming a finalist for the Norris Trophy this season.
Will Tyson Jost see his role expand with the Buffalo Sabres in 2023-24?
As a pending restricted free agent, you can expect the Sabres to hang onto Jost after he found a role on the team as a forechecker and penalty killer. But with an organization laden with prospects that is also interested in bringing back veteran unrestricted free agents like Kyle Okposo and Zemgus Girgensons, where does that leave Jost?
Being a waiver-wire pickup doesn’t help the veteran forward’s status, and while Jost could offer more than Okposo and Girgensons, the latter two’s leadership qualities are what makes them so valuable to the Blue and Gold.
We also believe Buffalo will seek to move winger Victor Olofsson during the offseason, so you can expect someone like Matt Savoie to take over for him. As for Jost, he may need to stave off prospect Jiri Kulich, who’s been one of the best players for the AHL’s Rochester Americans over his first season in North America.
At this point, assuming he returns, Jost can wind up on as high as the third line, he could be a rotational player on the fourth, or he may barely even see the ice. If the Buffalo Sabres want to keep their lineup resembling what it looked like last season, Jost could end up on a line with Casey Mittelstadt and, presumably, Matt Savoie.
If Kulich impresses enough to get the recall, then Jost could see himself fall into a rotational role with Jordan Greenway, Okposo, and Girgensons, assuming the latter two re-sign. But remember, the Sabres traded a second round pick for Greenway, so there is always the possibility they value him more than Jost, and that could ultimately land him in a Vinnie Hinostroza type of role.
Source: Sabres’ Tyson Jost hopes he has found home in Buffalo: ‘Really special group’ by Bill Hoppe, BuffaloHockeyBeat.com