While hockey fans continue to wait for the big free agent and trade dominoes to fall, the Buffalo Sabres announced two minor signings today. The team has re-signed RFA defenseman TJ Brennan, and has added UFA forward Nick Tarnasky, formerly of the KHL, both on one-year contracts.
Sabres fans got a quick look at Brennan during his 11 games played in Buffalo last season, and most know that he's been a stalwart on the blue line in Portland/Rochester over the past few seasons. He boasts a wickedly hard slap shot, and was the first Sabres defenseman since Lindy Ruff in 1979 to score in his NHL debut.
Brennan's re-signing further crowds an already jam-packed group of defenders on the Sabres payroll. The team now has ten defenseman signed to their roster, but will likely only carry seven during the season, meaning that three players out of the group of Mike Weber, Brayden McNabb, Adam Pardy, and TJ Brennan will be starting the season in Rochester. This is, of course, barring further trades from GM Darcy Regier. (#dosomethingdarcy)
Tarnasky comes to Rochester via Vityaz Chekov of the KHL, though he's also played with Tampa Bay, Nashville, and Florida over the course of 5 seasons in the NHL, the last in 2009-2010. He's a pretty big body standing at 6'2'', 224lbs, and should fit in nicely as a checking center or winger in Rochester. A goal scorer he is not, netting only 13 goals in 245 NHL games, but he's yet another piece in the Sabres organizational philosophy of becoming tougher to play against.