Buffalo Sabres: Top 5 draft picks in Kevyn Adams’ first three seasons

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Buffalo Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams proved he has an incredible eye for talent, judging from his first three seasons on the job.

Buffalo Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams has been on the job for just three seasons. Yet he’s displayed such an incredible eye for young talent, it was hard to create a list of his five top players and prospects since his first draft in 2020.

Below, you will meet those five players and why I think so highly of them. But first, let’s give a shoutout to some honorable mentions, including Matt Savoie, Noah Ostlund, Nikita Novikov, and Tyson Kozak.

So who made the top five? Let’s meet them.

Buffalo Sabres

BUFFALO, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 27: Isak Rosen #63 of the Buffalo Sabres skates during the first period against the Philadelphia Flyers at KeyBank Center on September 27, 2022 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Joshua Bessex/Getty Images)

5 best draft picks in Buffalo Sabres general manager’s first three seasons

5 – Isak Rosen

Had I concocted this list last year, Isak Rosen would have been closer to draft bust than top draft pick. He was injury-prone, and he saw little ice time in Sweden’s top professional hockey league.

I remember that when Rosen signed his entry-level, I was excited, but in actuality, I had more than a few reservations regarding the Swede. And if you wanted my true thoughts at the time, it was that he’d be buried in Rochester’s lineup.

But by the time the playoffs rolled around-before, really-Rosen adapted to the North American game and became one of the most exciting players on the ice. When he needed to disrupt a play, he disrupted it, when he needed to be in scoring position, he was there.

His on-ice awareness and hockey IQ were incredible. And it wouldn’t surprise me if he earned a cameo for the upcoming season.

4 – Jiri Kulich

“We just drafted a steal.” Those were the words I said to myself Adams turned in the draft card with Jiri Kulich’s name on it. I liked the pick so much that soon after, I speculated he’d be playing in Rochester for 2022-23, even when the topic at the time was debatable.

And like J.J. Peterka and Jack Quinn before him, Kulich enjoyed an incredible rookie season, leading the team with 31 goals in the regular season and playoffs combined. He also improved his defensive game, and that could be the deciding factor in him potentially replacing Victor Olofsson in the Buffalo Sabres lineup this season.

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