It's time to put the finishing touches on the 2008-2009 season for the Buffalo Sabres. Here is a complete report card of every single player that played a significant amount of time with the Sabres this season. Thanks to Japers Rink and Mile High Hockey for the inspiration.
#21 / Right Wing / Buffalo Sabres
Oct 30, 1985
|2008 - Drew Stafford||79||20||25||45||3||29||9||0||0||2||183||10.9|
Key Stat: Stafford was in his third season as a professional and set a career high for goals (20), assists (25) and points (45).
Interesting Stat: Stafford had one fight this season against Jonathon Ericsson and was credited the loser at hockeyfights.com. Stafford has had one fight each season since joining the Sabres and he lost all three including a fight against Ilya Kovalchuk in 2007-2008.
- Derek Roy - Thomas Vanek (1111 shifts - 10 points)
- Clarke MacArtur - Derek Roy (490 shifts - 4 points)
- Tim Connolly - Thomas Vanek (420 shifts - 3 points)
- Jochen Hecht - Derek Roy (355 shifts - 1 point)
- Nathan Gerbe - Derek Roy (306 shifts - 2 points)
The Good: Stafford became an offensive player this season with career highs in every offensive category. Of his 20 goals he scored 11 even strength goals and nine power play goals. He played most of the season on the Sabres top line with Derek Roy and Thomas Vanek.
Stafford was one of the few Sabres to finish the season with a plus rating. He was a +3 at the end of the season. More importantly the Sabres scored 2.66 goals for every 60 minutes Stafford was on the ice and they allowed only 2.30 goals for every 60 minutes. When Stafford is not on the ice the Sabres scored 2.41 / 60 minutes and allowed the same.
The Bad: Stafford was rather inconsistent this season. He often went on point streaks but then fell of the radar for weeks at a time. He even found himself in the press box for three games as a healthy scratch.
Stafford is also criticized for not being physical enough. He finished the season with 80 hits which was seventh on the team.
Although he is better with the puck than some of his teammates he finished the season as a -6 in the giveaway/takeaway ratio. He gave the puck away a total of 30 times this season.
2008-2009 Salary: $984,200
2009-2010 Status: Restricted Free Agent
Vote: It's time to grade Stafford for his play in Buffalo during the 2008-2009 season. Every player has expectations so vote based on those expectations. If a player played to their potential they should receive a "C" if they exceeded expectations they would receive a "B" or an "A".
Discuss: Do you think Stafford will receive an offer-sheet from another team? Did he play his way out of Buffalo because he will earn too much money? What is the biggest strength and biggest weakness in his game?