Who is the lowest-paid player on the Sabres?

The Buffalo Sabres have plenty of highly-paid talents, but some remain on entry-level deals that are only six figures in length.
Buffalo Sabres v Seattle Kraken
Buffalo Sabres v Seattle Kraken / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

Not every NHL player will make seven figures, especially when they’re on their entry-level deal, and the Sabres have quite a few players who have yet to sign their first contract worth such a dollar amount. Players currently on six-figure deals who are simultaneously slated to roll with the big club in 2024-25 include JJ Peterka, Jack Quinn, Zach Benson, Devon Levi, and Ryan Johnson…or Jacob Bryson…

Anyway, of the players mentioned, JJ Peterka is the lowest-paid player on the Blue and Gold, with a contract worth a cap hit of just $855,834. But that may not be the case for long, as Peterka is eligible to receive a contract extension this year, so maybe this article will be nothing more than old news by the time you read it. 

Even if that’s not the case, expect Peterka to sign a rather lucrative contract at some point either this season or shortly into the 2025 offseason if he enjoys a campaign reminiscent of the one he had this past year. In case you missed it or if you’re new to Sabres hockey, Peterka played in all 82 games this past season, finishing the year with 50 points and a breakout 28-goal campaign. 

JJ Peterka is the lowest-paid player on the Sabres, but not for long…

Oh, and if you would like a fun fact, Peterka scored the first goal for the Sabres in both 2022 and 2023, so he also has that to his growing list of accolades. Still, the improvement he showed from his rookie year in 2022-23, in which he finished with 32 points and 12 goals, was nothing compared to his explosive outing last season amidst a year when the Blue and Gold regressed when they had the puck. 

So what can we expect from Peterka as he heads into Year 3 of what looks like a successful stint with the Sabres? For one, you can look for him to sign that extension, even if it may not occur until next summer. And for another, 60-65 points is a realistic guess for a player who looked more than comfortable logging top-six minutes. 

What’s amazing is the fact that Peterka still struggled with a few scoreless droughts last season, so he still lacks consistency. But if he can find the net 28 times without it, what kind of player will he be once he’s scoring goals regularly? That’s a scary thought if your favorite team plays in the same division as Buffalo, but if you’re a Sabres fan, there’s a lot to look forward to.