One more day and we will unveil the number one draft steal in Buffalo Sabres history. With that in mind it is important to note that Alexander Mogilny was the best player on this list but it involves selection order as well. Today we will talk about a great Defenseman and tomorrow we go back to the forward position.
Uwe Krupp- 1983 (11th round, #223 overall)
It's amazing to think that Uwe Krupp was not drafted until the 223rd pick overall. I have a hard time believing that there were 222 players that were even remotely better than Uwe, but I digress. Krupp was drafted in 1983 but did not break into the Sabres lineup until 1986 as a 21 year-old. In his first season he played only 26 games but by the 87-88 season he was a fixture on the Sabres blue-line.
Krupp played in Buffalo for a little over five seasons and he had his best season in 1990-1991 when he scored 12 goals and 32 assists in 44 assists. He would have a long career in Buffalo but he was traded to the New York Islanders in 1991-1992 along with Pierre Turgeon in the trade that brought Pat LaFontaine to Buffalo. As good as Uwe was, you would be hard pressed to convince me that was a bad trade.
Krupp went on to play many more good seasons in the NHL with the Islanders, Quebec Nordiques and Colorado Avalanche. The highlight of his career was scoring the overtime winner in game four of the Stanley Cup Finals over the Florida Panthers to clinch the Stanley Cup for the Avalanche. Krupp also won a Stanley Cup as a member of the Detroit Red Wings but injuries prevented him from playing much in the regular season and the playoffs.
In his career he played a total of 729 games and he scored 69 goals and 212 assists, more importantly he was a plus 97 in his career. Krupp had his career cut short by injuries, suffering what turned out to be a career ending back injury in 1998-1999. He played only 12 games after the injury occurred in 1998 and he eventually retired on April 27, 2003.