Henrik Lundqvist’s recent comments shed truth on the Buffalo Sabres

While the Buffalo Sabres are still the youngest team in the NHL, they still have more experience than most groups sitting at their average age.
Buffalo Sabres v Arizona Coyotes
Buffalo Sabres v Arizona Coyotes / Zac BonDurant/GettyImages

Recently, former NHL goaltender Henrik Lundqvist voiced his displeasure at the Buffalo Sabres during their blowout loss to the Colorado Avalanche. It’s clear that Lundqvist, like many in the NHL community, believed in the Blue and Gold to the point that, at the very least, they would look like a contending team all year. 

What we got so far in 2023-24 was a team mired in mediocrity, and still playing like a group that appeared to be early in their respective rebuild. When speaking about the team, Lundqvist gave us two things: The truth, and sage advice, and both are something the Sabres should take to heart.

"“They have a pretty good team but they’re beating themselves with how they choose to pass the puck, take chances. For them to take the next step and make the playoffs, they need to start playing winning hockey and have accountability in every play. That’s what you see from great teams around the league: Accountability. Biggest thing.”"

Henrik Lundqvist

Source: Sabres get another chance at the national spotlight as Bruins hit town by Mike Harrington, Buffalo News

Buffalo Sabres need to exercise accountability Lundqvist mentions

To be fair, the Sabres have sustained quite a few injuries, and across their previous two contests, they have played much better hockey. But now that this team has gotten its health back for the time being, plus the fact the Sabres once again rolled with the style of play that made them so effective last season, we should see a better team taking the ice tonight. 

However, Lundqvist also mentioned accountability, and it’s something we haven’t seen the Buffalo Sabres engage in this season. As the former NHL goaltender noted, it’s something that needs to happen on every shift. If a single player or the entire unit struggles through a bad one, constant accountability is the only way this team will improve to the point they are contending again. 

That first test to kick off the unofficial second half of the season begins tonight when the Sabres face the Boston Bruins. The Blue and Gold, who are 1-0-1 since rediscovering that dangerous, high-octane play, have a chance to upset a team that has been struggling for the last couple of weeks.