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Buffalo Sabres Draft Steal #15

It's finally time to unveil the number one draft steal in Buffalo Sabres history.  As I mentioned earlier he comes from the forwards ranks and he had a fairly long career in Buffalo.  The draft is tomorrow and I will have more on that later on but without further adieu...

Donald Audette- 1989 (9th round, #183 overall)

Audette was drafted in 1989 and he immediately made an impact on the Sabres farm team in Rochester.  As a 20 year-old rookie he scored 42 goals and 46 assists for 88 points in 70 games played in the American Hockey League.  The Sabres called him up almost immediately in 1990-1991, after he scored four goals in five games with Rochester.  He had four goals and three assists with the Sabres but his season was cut short in November, by a knee injury that he suffered in a game against the Edmonton Oilers.

The knee injury was not enough to slow down Audette, he came back with one of his best seasons of his career the following season.  He scored 31 goals in 63 games during his first full NHL season.  He played seven seasons in his first stint with the Buffalo Sabres and he scored at least 20 goals five times.  He was eventually traded to the Los Angeles Kings in December of 1998 after a lengthy contract holdout.

He never really became the player that the Kings expected and he was eventually dealt to the Atlanta Thrashers were he put together his best NHL season 2000-2001.  He scored 32 goals and 39 assistsin 64 games while playing for Atlanta that season.  The Thrashers were out of the playoffs and dealt him back to Buffalo at the trade deadline.  He scored only two goals in 12 regular season games and only three goals in 13 playoff games for the Sabres.  He left Buffalo a second time at the end of the season signing as a free agent by the Dallas Stars.

In his career Audette played for the Sabres, Kings, Thrashers, Stars, Montreal Canadiens and Florida Panthers before retiring after the 2003-2004 season.  Audette finished his career having played 735 regular season games and scoring 260 goals.  He also scored 21 playoff goals in 72 career playoff games.