TSN Predicts The Top Sabres Scorers

BUFFALO, NY - APRIL 24: Nathan Gerbe #42 (left facing) of the Buffalo Sabres celebrates with teammates after scoring Bufffalo's fourth goal against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at HSBC Arena at HSBC Arena on April 24, 2011 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

With the NHL season set to start by the end of the week when training camps open, fantasy players are starting to get their draft sheets together. Scott Cullen has put out the top 300 point projections for the 2011-2012 season and it's interesting to see where some Sabres slot on the list with 12 Sabres players making the top 300. Below is where they slotted with their overall rank given:


G A P +/- PIM

24 - Derek Roy

39 - Thomas Vanek

69 - Drew Stafford

87 - Brad Boyes

90 - Jason Pominville

120 - Christian Ehrhoff

123 - Tyler Ennis

133 - Ville Leino

169 - Nathan Gerbe

231 - Tyler Myers

253 - Jochen Hecht

280 - Jordan Leopold

22

31

25

19

22

13

19

16

21

10

15

11

48

34

29

33

29

34

28

29

20

26

18

20

70

65

54

52

51

47

47

45

41

36

33

31

2

4

8

3

4

14

3

5

8

5

5

-8

32

34

32

30

18

50

32

18

38

36

28

30


My thoughts on the projections following the jump

I would like to start by reminding that these are only projections of what could happen next season and that most projections are built on previous performances. This means that some players will exceed expectations and others will disappoint. 

As of right now, TSN is predicting that the Sabres will have one 30 goal scorer, which if that truly happens could mean that the Sabres are going to be in trouble. Thomas Vanek's 31 goals would be right on par with the last two seasons that he's had, 28 and 32 goals respectively. Vanek always has the potential to score 40-50 goals every season, but he has only done it twice in his six year career. 

Drew Stafford's 25 goals and 54 points seem on par with the type of season that he will most likely have this season. Last season's 31 goal, 52 point season did come in a contract year for Stafford and now that he has his new four year contract, it would seem that Stafford is going to regress in this coming season. Stafford has a career average of scoring .30 goals/game which would put him on pace of 25 goals this season. 

Tyler Ennis and Nathan Gerbe could be two players who could exceed expectations. Ennis is projected to score 19 goals and Gerbe is expected to score 21, but both players have the potential to score 30 goals each depending on where they are playing in the lineup. Nathan Gerbe struggled in the first half of the season, scoring one goal in 40 games. Once he found his game again though, Gerbe had 15 goals in the second half and added another two goals in the playoffs. Ennis had 20 goals last season over 82 games, his first full season. With another season under his belt, the likelihood of Ennis scoring 30 is better than most would imagine. If both players are playing with the top two scoring lines, then the expectation to score 30 is greater than if they are floundering on the bottom two lines. 

While TSN's projections don't have the Sabres as an offensive powerhouse, they could be a fairly balanced team that would still make the playoffs. Many of these projections though have a tendency to be on the conservative side though. 

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