Who Makes The Cut: The 2014-2015 Buffalo Sabres

The Goaltenders

It is expected that Jhonas Enroth and Michal Neuvirth will be sharing the duties this season. However with Matt Hackett out with his knee injury till Janurary, Nathan Lieuwen will have the best chance to prove he belongs in the NHL if Enroth or Neuvirth goes down with an injury or gets traded.

The Defense

First off, lets look at the guarentees. Tyler Myers, Andrej Meszaros, Josh Gorges, Andre Benoit, and Mike Weber will be regulars on the Sabres roster this season. But that’s 5 defensemen and the Sabres should have 7 on the team. With 2 spots open likely they will go to Rasmus Ristolainen, Jake McCabe, Chad Ruhwedel, or Mark Pysyk. Personally, I believe Risto and Ruhwedel will get the spots but Nikita Zadorov will get another taste of the NHL as well but will likely be sent to his junior team, the London Knights of the OHL. McCabe and Pysyk will be in Rochester but will get called up this season.

The Forwards

Okay, this is where anything can happen as the Sabres have lots of options at the forward position. But the guarented roster spots this seaon will likely be Tyler Ennis, Cody Hodgson, Zemgus Girgensons, Matt Moulson, Brian Gionta, Marcus Foligno, Chris Stewart, Drew Stafford, Brian Flynn, and Nicolas Deslauriers. With 10 spots filled that leaves up to 4 spots open for forwards. Torey Mitchell, Cody McCormick, Matt Ellis, Zach Dalpe, Luke Adam, Mikhail Grigorenko, Johan Larsson, Patrick Kaleta, Sam Reinhart and possibly Joel Armia and Brendan Lemieux will be competing for the last 4 spots. This makes a huge competition among the forwards with 9-11 players competing for 4 spots on the Sabres roster. I do believe Mitchell, McCormick, Ellis, and Kaleta(yes Kaleta will return to Buffalo) will be on the roster however Reinhart will play and like Zadorov, will likely get sent to his junior team, the Kootney Ice of the WHL. Everybody else, minus Lemieux will likely start the season in Rochester. Lemieux will be on his junior team, the Barrie Colts of the OHL.