4 surprises from the 2023/2024 Buffalo Sabres

Apr 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Buffalo Sabres left wing Zach Benson (9) celebrates after he
Apr 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Zach Benson (9) celebrates after he / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports
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Now that the 2023/2024 regular season is done for the Buffalo Sabres, it's time to reflect on the year it was. Even though the Sabres finished with a winning record for the second straight year, this season was considered as a failure.

With how much the team took a step forward after the 2022/2023 season, we thought this was the year the playoff drought would end. Obviously, it wasn't and I think it will be an interesting and active offseason for general manager Kevyn Adams.

The season was a disappointment and I think that was a big surprise. Aside from the results, there were other surprises, both good and bad. In this article, here are two good and two bad surprises from the 2023/2024 Buffalo Sabres.

Good: Zach Benson's rookie season

After being selected 13th overall by Buffalo in last year's Draft, Zach Benson had a strong preseason and as a result, he made the opening night roster. In his first NHL season, Benson scored 11 goals and registered 19 assists for 30 points in 71 games played. While his numbers were nothing insane, hitting the double-digit mark in goals is pretty good for an 18-year-old.

In the points department, the rookie finished eighth-best on the team. Zach earned his way on the main roster and finished this season strong. One thing I love about Benson is he isn't afraid to go to the front of the net and try to cause a disturbance. Now and then he will play with a nasty side, which is what Buffalo needs more of.

Depending on what the Sabres do in the offseason, I think 50 points is a good target for Benson in his second year. He is going to be a huge part of the franchise and I'm excited to see how he does.