Two future NHLers dominate Tier IV of the Sabres Top 24 and under player and prospect rankings

You know the Sabres dynamic prospects pool shines when there are two forwards who have already seen NHL ice taking a middle-of-the-pack ranking.
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14: Peyton Krebs, Sabres

Peyton Krebs falls behind a few prospects, and it’s not a knock on the pending restricted free agent as much as it has to do with upside. Through his first two seasons with the Sabres, it’s become clear that Krebs is a lower-liner and strictly a defensive forward as opposed to someone who will even be a complementary scorer in the NHL. 

In 2022-23, Krebs finished the year with 26 points and nine goals, and that number plummeted to just 17 points and four goals this past season. He also has seen his ice time steadily decline since he entered the Sabres system in 2021-22. But it’s hard to argue that there is anyone more important to the Blue and Gold on the fourth line. 

That said, he should get a qualifying offer extended in the offseason and continue playing his defense-first game. No, he may not see more than 12 minutes per contest next year but expect the hard-hitting forward who isn’t afraid to skirmish with opponents to embrace that role even more in 2024-25. 

While he still has ways to go in the stat line, I was also impressed with the fact Krebs’ faceoff win percentage keeps trending north. And if he can get it over 50 percent, the Sabres will finally have someone capable of winning at the faceoff dot in their own zone.