Would You Rather, NHL Draft Edition: Trade Up, Or Stay Put?

Bruce Bennett

The Sabres have two pretty good first round picks in #8 and #16 as well as two second rounders, but have also publicly stated that they'd like to move up in the draft. Which would you rather see them do - sacrifice picks/prospects to move up, or stay put and stock the farm system?

The Buffalo Sabres find themselves in a unique position in the 2013 NHL Draft. With two first and two second round picks, they'll certainly be busy no matter how the draft shakes out.

However, GM Darcy Regier and his staff have been oddly public about their desire to jump in to the top of the draft. Regier spoke at the season-ending press conference about the need to get more elite talent on the team, and how you usually find that talent at the top of the draft.

The Sabres certainly have the ammunition to move up with those four picks in the first two rounds, expiring contracts for star players in Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller, and plenty of prospects to choose from, especially at center and goal. It gives them a unique opportunity to move up without sacrificing too much of the organization's future. I highly doubt they'll be able to get the #1 pick, and #2 will likely be tough as well, but they should be able to move up to the 3-5 area if they can make the right deal.

However, as we saw this year, the Sabres still have a number of big holes to fill, both at forward and defense. Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller could both be gone before season's end, and then you have a hole in goal to fill as well as an even bigger need up front for scoring.

Their four picks in the first two rounds could be used to help stock up a burgeoning list of prospects that saw a nice bump last year from Mikhail Grigorenko, Zemgus Girgensons, and Jake McCabe, who were, incidentally, selected in the first two rounds. Getting three or our more future contributors with the potential to develop in to solid players if not stars is a tempting offer as well.

It's the biggest decision of the draft for Regier, and regardless of which choice he makes, the Sabres will certainly be one of the more interesting teams to follow on June 30. So which would you rather see, Sabres fans - trade up, or stock the system?

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