Buffalo Sabres Offseason: Time to Rebuild or Stand Pat?


With the seemingly new-found wealth for Buffalo Sabres general manager Darcy Regier as owner, Terry Pegula says all the right things to fans and the media. Only one question really remains: Is this an offseason for them to rebuild or stand pat?

There is no question the Sabres have some really great pieces to the puzzle in place. But looming over their heads like a demolition ball is the fact they are still without a true No. 1 center, and quite possibly a No. 2 center as well.

The lack of a true power forward seems to be something they have not had in years. It is essential that Sabres’ brass looks deep and hard at this and grasps the concept of how utterly valuable a true power forward can be to the success of a team.

The defense is not a lost cause either, but the coaching staff needs to decide whether they are going to stick to a run-and-gun style defense where while they will give up the occasional odd man rush, they are going to inject a blueliner deep in the offensive zone to act as a fourth forward.

The problem with that concept is the head coach Lindy Ruff never seems to stick to one style, and almost confuses his players when he pulls those reigns back on the style for no rhyme or reason.

On the flip side, Ruff can implement a more stay at home defensive style. working more on capitalizing on their opponents mistakes through the neutral zone to win games.

I personally believe either approach will work, they just need to stick to the game plan and take their lumps as they move along throughout the next season.

With the biggest name on the open market at center this offseason being Brad Richards, Regier could make a tremendous splash and commitment to winning with a player of this caliber. Even a forward like the never-aging Mark Recchi could bring alot to the table for the Sabres not only on the ice, but off it as well.

The fact may be that the Sabres may have to overpay a marquee player to come to Buffalo, but long-term return on that investment may be just what the doctor ordered to get this team over the top with the new and revamped message Terry Pegula is selling to the fans of the Sabres.

In my humble opinion, look for the Sabres to be very busy come July 1st.

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