We run down both the Eastern Conference Finals and Western Conference Finals now that the NHL’s second round is complete. We touch on the no speed limit Western Conference Final and the goaltending battle that looms in the east.
We also discuss the signing of Isak Rosen and how the Sabres might manage his development in Rochester or Sweden during the 2022-23 season.
The Sabres didn’t see their picks move in the NHL Draft Lottery and they will draft ninth and 16th in this year’s draft. The only first round pick to be determined is that of the Florida Panthers, which will fall between 28th and 32nd depending on their finish. On this week’s show we talk about the lottery results and who the Sabres could be looking at with their top two picks. We also talk about Barry Trotz’ departure from the New York Islanders and run through some of the key talking points from the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Another season is in the books and we look back at the way the Sabres played over the course of 2022-23 and what it means for them going forward. While we don’t assign grades to any individual, we break down each of the team’s position groups to see where the bright spots were and where the Sabres need to improve most.
We wrap up the show with a brief conversation on the NHL playoffs and which early storylines in the postseason stand out most to us.
Matt Keeler and Nick Ciavarella of JustDishin join the show to discuss SkateSkins and the product’s introduction into the NHL. They also offer some tremendous insight into the intersection of hockey and fashion and how that evolution has the ability to move the sport forward on a number of levels. This wide ranging conversation touches on a number of intriguing topics, including the latest from JustDishin and SkateSkins, a product that made a huge splash in the NHL last week.
It’s another Ask Instigator version of the podcast as we answer a number of listener questions on everything from trading their first round picks and what a lottery win would mean for the Sabres to which player from 2005-06 or 06-07 would we pick up and place on the current iteration of the Sabres roster.
We also touch on Jack Quinn and JJ Peterka’s All-Rookie Team nomination in the AHL and discuss Vegas impeding elimination from the NHL playoff race and how that affects the Sabres in the draft.
Owen Power’s NHL career is a week old and we spend some time reflecting on his strong play through the first four games he’s appeared in. We also touch on how he and Rasmus Dahlin are rounding out a formidable top-four for the Sabres.
Also on the show is a discussion over Devon Levi and Erik Portillo each returning to school and how that affects Buffalo’s decisions in net for the offseason. We wrap up this week’s show talking about the introduction of ads on NHL jerseys.
Jason Moser of PuckLuck.com joined the show this week to discuss the way he applies advanced analytics to betting NHL games and how his model can help give bettors an edge in winning hockey bets. We discuss how he developed the model using common analytics such as expected goals and how those models are applied to determine which NHL games offer the best opportunity for betting wins on a night-to-night basis.
We also touch on how models such as Jason’s can be applied to areas such as fantasy hockey. All of the information can be found on Jason’s site, puckluck.com, which is free and available to the public. We talk at length about the sort of information he provides on the site and how it is structured to help you win more bets.
The Sabres celebrated Rick Jeanneret on Friday night and they put on quite a show in the process. We talk about the whirlwind evening and many of the highlights of the team’s impressive pregame ceremony, decisive win over the Predators and touching post-game tribute.
We also touch on prospect Devon Levi and the news that he will be returning to Northeastern for his junior season after finishing 2021-22 as a Hobey Baker finalist. Levi isn’t the only collegiate goalie the Sabres need to be tracking, as there are signs that Erik Portillo could qualify as a free agent as early as the 2023 offseason. That, plus Levi’s return likely puts him front-and-center to the Sabres plans to ink their collegiate prospects.
Kevyn Adams stood pat at this year’s trade deadline, only moving out Robert Hagg on Sunday. We talk about what the lack of action means for the team as they prepare for the stretch run, how they might fit key youngsters into the lineup and whether or not Adams made the right call by not making additional moves.
We also touch on moves from around the league. Who we felt were the big winners of this year’s deadline and even discuss that wacky Evgenii Dadonov deal.
The hockey world has reacted to the war in Ukraine, as Russia and Belarus have been suspended from international play by the IIHF and the 2023 World Junior Championships have been removed from Russia as well. Additional hockey-related sanctions have been placed on the two countries and we discuss the fallout that will come from the actions taken by both sides, from a hockey perspective. We also discuss the new initiatives being take by the Sabres in an effort to re-engage with their season ticket holders and fanbase as a whole. With a new VP of Ticketing, steps are being taken to open new avenues to connect with the fanbase and get butts back in the seats.