3 reasons fans can be optimistic about the Sabres despite falling short of the playoffs

The Buffalo Sabres concluded their 2023-24 season against the Tampa Bay Lightning, and it was a disappointing six months for a team with playoff aspirations.
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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Sabres finally have a legitimate tandem at goaltender

Devon Levi needs to earn his spot next season, or else he should spend another year in Rochester. But his numbers with the Amerks have been stellar in 23 games as of April 15th, with a 0.925 save percentage and a 2.48 GAA. Levi also has 14 wins, and if he plays well in the postseason and the 2024 preseason, he’s winning the 1B job. 

Whether Levi opens the season as Luukkonen’s 1B in a role akin to something we saw from Jeremy Swayman in Boston last season is something we won’t immediately know. But if the Sabres feel he needs more time in Rochester, it won’t be too long before he’s in Buffalo while any stopgap gets reassigned to the AHL. This is assuming that stopgap is playing like a backup goaltender and not as a solid supplement to Luukkonen.

Regardless, the Sabres have a legitimate tandem at goaltender, and we will see it often next season assuming general manager Kevyn Adams re-signs Luukkonen. If not, then it’s Levi’s net, but let’s go with the most possible scenario and suppose one of the Sabres most valuable players this season is back in the crease. 

Luukkonen and Levi will be another year older and more experienced, and we should anticipate a more productive season from both when they become a full-time tandem. That’s something the Sabres haven’t had lately, and it’s refreshing to see not one but two competent goaltenders in the system.