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Buffalo Sabres Draft Steal #8

You thought it wasn't coming but it's better late than never.  Once again we travel back to the 1980's for a player the Sabres drafted in the late rounds and he turned out to be a pretty good NHL player.  I never realized how interesting it would be to go back and see where certain players were drafted and take a look back at their careers after they are over.

Christian Ruuttu- 1983 (7th round, #139 overall)

Christian Ruuttu was drafted as an 18 year old in 1983 while playing In Finland.  It wasn't until four years later in 1986, as a 22 year-old that he finally cracked the Sabres lineup.  He played a full season in 1986-1987 and he scored 22 goals and 43 assists in 76 games.  He was also a plus nine for a team that missed the playoffs and allowed 308 goals.

He was even better in his second season in the NHL, setting career highs in goals (26) and points (71) in 73 games played.  He also had a career high eight power play goals during that season.  He was even better in his first ever NHL post-season scoring two goals and five assists in six playoff games. 

Although Ruuttu never matched the 87-88 again he had a couple more solid seasons in Buffalo.  He played four really good seasons as a Sabre before he fell off.  He hit an all-time low in 1991-1992 scoring only four goals in 70 games.  He was traded that off-season in a deal that eventually brought Dominik Hasek to Buffalo, although he was officially traded to Winnipeg for Stephane Beauregard.

In his career he played a total of six seasons with the Sabres and he scored 101 of his 134 career goals as a member of the Blue and Gold.  Ruuttu was like many other players I've talked about because he was not  very popular with the fans.  Ruuttu finished his career playing with the Chicago Blackhawks, Vancouver Canucks and eventually played a couple of seasons over in Europe.