2013-14 Buffalo Sabres Report Cards: Nicolas Deslauriers

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Sabres 2013-14 season was one of the worst in franchise history, and now it's time to take a look at who made it all possible. We're grading everybody who played 20 or more games for the Sabres this year, from Concacher to Weber.

Contract: RFA (Made $608,333 this season)

Report Card Grade in 2013: N/A

Introduction: Nicolas Deslauriers was acquired with Hudson Fasching on the Trade Deadline from the Los Angeles Kings for Brayden McNabb and two second round picks. Deslauriers had recently been converted from a scoring defenseman into a forward, and was getting results in Manchester. He was the Monarchs leading scorer at the time of the trade. He made his NHL debut against the Florida Panthers two days later.

Key Stat: Zone starts - For those who aren't familiar, zone start percentage measures how frequently a player starts a shift in the offensive zone. Not surprisingly, this is a stat that the Sabres as a whole struggle with as more often than not they were playing defense. Deslauriers managed to be in the defensive zone only slightly more than 50 percent, finishing ninth on the team with 46 percent. The only Sabres who finished higher on the list and played more games than Deslauriers were Chad Ruhwedel, Cory Conacher, Tyler Ennis, and Zemgus Girgensons.

Thumbs Up: When it comes to 5-on-5 possession numbers, Deslauriers was one of the best on the team. His +4.6% relative Corsi ranks sixth on the Sabres and his +6.7% relative Fenwick is only behind Phil Varone. It's worthy to note that these possession numbers were coming against a poor quality of competition compared to some of his teammates, as Deslauriers' line was frequently matched up against other team's third and fourth lines.

Thumbs Down: Deslauriers wasn't a player that looked out of place in the NHL, but he certainly wasn't lighting up the lamp either. In his seventeen games he was only able to score one goal and had no assists. For a player somewhat new to being a forward getting his first chance in the NHL, his lack of production isn't very surprising.

Memorable Moment: Deslauriers' top moment was a fight in the Islanders game on April 13. Him and Scott Mayfield had been talking a few minutes earlier, but were unable to fight before the refs assessed them both a minor penalty. After the two exited the penalty box they finally went at it, with Deslauriers earning a decisive victory.

Voting: The Sabres season wasn't so hot, but that doesn't mean every player gets an F. Grades will be on the Sabres curve, so readers can feel a little less miserable. Using the system of A, B, C, D, and F, what grade did Nick Deslauriers earn this season?

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