The Sabres will have some work to do in order to reach the cap floor for the 2022-23 season. That will mean some creative moves will need to be made via free agency and the trade market in the coming weeks and months in order to hit the minimum salary cap figure. We run down a list for forwards, defensemen and goaltenders who the Sabres could target to not only fill their cap void, but to help push the team closer to competitiveness for the coming season.
The main focus of this week’s show is Alex Tuch and the impressive impact he’s had since arriving in Buffalo. We talk about the underlying numbers he’s carrying, the incredible point production and simply how good he’s looked taking a step up in the lineup and helping to anchor Buffalo’s top line.
We add some thoughts about how Tuch’s emergence can help fuel the next moves the Sabres make in terms of free agent or trade acquisitions, and how he’s become a cornerstone of the young core they’re building with.
Prior to that, we touch on the trade between the Montreal Canadians and Calgary Flames that saw Tyler Toffoli head to Alberta. We discuss Jack Eichel’s impending return and the disappointment in not seeing Devon Levi receive any action for Team Canada at the 2022 Olympic Games.
The Montreal Canadiens fired Dominique Ducharme and named Martin St. Louis as their interim head coach as they work through a very difficult season. We discuss the Habs’ decision to go with a somewhat unexpected hire for their interim coach and whether or not St. Louis will have the inside track to take over in a more permanent capacity. Tuukka Rask called it a career and we celebrate his career while bidding him adieu We also discuss the NHL All Star Game and NHL Skills Competition before closing the show with a brief conversation about the men’s and women’s hockey tournament at the 2022 Winter Olympics.
We answer listener questions on air, but before we do, we discuss Rocky Wirtz’s outburst at a Blackhawks town hall rally and what the fallout could be for the troubled franchise. We also talk about some of the adaptations being made to the All Star Skills Competition and which Sabre player we think would be the best representative at this year’s All Star Game.
We wrap up the episode with a handful of #AskInstigator questions from our listeners where we discuss offseason acquisitions, the Heritage Classic and where we see Rasmus Dahlin at the end of his current contract.
The Sabres have dropped three straight since returning from the holiday break. We discuss the debuts of Alex Tuch, Peyton Krebs and JJ Peterka, offering thoughts on how each looked as they played their first games in blue and gold. We also touch on the roster issues that face the Sabres as they work through what appears to be a growing COVID outbreak in the locker room.
Peyton Krebs and JJ Peterka are poised to make their Sabres debuts as the team finally gets back to playing after an extended absence due to the league’s COVID influenced pause. We chat about how the pair will factor into the lineup along with another debutant: Alex Tuch. Beyond our excitement with Buffalo’s recent recalls, we also chat about the cancellation of the women’s U18 World Championships, how COVID has impacted the World Juniors and other topics from the past week in the NHL.
The NHL has extended their Christmas holiday break in an attempt to curb the COVID outbreak that has swept through the league. The result of the postponed games officially put the NHL past the breaking point on Olympic participation and the league and player’s association are expected to make a formal announcement on the withdrawal from the 2022 games soon. We close this holiday edition of the show with a couple listener questions on the Sabres potential deadline moves and what the future might hold for Casey Mittelstadt.
COVID outbreaks continue to impact the NHL schedule as this week has seen a number of teams impacted by positive tests and game postponements. We discuss how these most recent outbreaks are affecting the NHL schedule and what influence it may have on the league’s ability to send players to the Olympics. Also on the docket is the impressive play of Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen and how he may be influencing Buffalo’s choices in net. Lastly, we touch on the World Junior Championships rosters, the Sabres prospects expected to participate and who we predict to take home gold in this year’s tournament.
Malcolm Subban has been acquired, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has been recalled and there’s still no end in sight for Buffalo’s issues in net. We discuss what options are left to the Sabres as they navigate an injury crisis to their goaltenders and how it could affect the remainder of the season. Along the way we touch on the latest round of firings as Jim Benning and Travis Green are out in Vancouver and Alain Vigneault has been fired by the Flyers.
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It was a huge news week in the NHL as the Montreal Canadiens fired Marc Bergevin, cleaned house with the rest of their front office and brought in Jeff Gorton to head up the hockey department. We discuss everything surrounding the moves and the difficulty in Montreal continuing to maintain hiring French speaking executives and coaches. Elsewhere, the Penguins have new owners in Fenway Sports Group and more COVID cases may just threaten the NHL’s ability to send players to the Olympics.
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