We're just a few days away from the 2014 Buffalo Sabres Development Camp, where the team's most recent draft picks will spend a week in Buffalo working with Ted Nolan and the rest of his coaching staff, and learning how to become better pros who will someday, hopefully, make it to the NHL. The camp is open to the public, and it will be the first chance for Sabres fans to see Sam Reinhart and the rest of the 2014 draft class, and will see the return of other recent draft picks like Rasmus Ristolainen and Nikita Zadorov.
However, to get ready for next week and to provide fodder for future speculation, we've put together a depth chart of all the players currently in the Sabres pipeline. As with our draft preview post, this list is order according to a rough combination of raw talent and NHL-readiness. Names in italics represent the 2014 draft class.
Buffalo Sabres Prospect Depth Chart - July 2014
|Nicolas Deslauriers||Sam Reinhart||Joel Armia|
|Brendan Lemieux||Mikhail Grigorenko||Hudson Fasching|
|JT Compher||Johan Larsson||Nicholas Baptiste|
|Vaclav Karabacek||Luke Adam||Judd Peterson|
|William Carrier||Daniel Catenacci||Christian Isackson|
|Justin Bailey||Justin Kea||Victor Olofsson|
|Gustav Possler||Phil Varone|
|Max Willman||Kevin Sundher|
|Brad Navin||Eric Cornel|
|Nikita Zadorov||Matt Hackett||Rasmus Ristolainen|
|Jake McCabe||Nathan Lieuwen||Mark Pysyk|
|Brycen Martin||Linus Ullmark||Chad Ruhwedel|
|Brady Austin||Andrey Makarov||Jerome Gauthier-Leduc|
|Jonas Johansson||Mark Adams|
|Calvin Petersen||Anthony Florentino|
The biggest increase we see post-draft is in top-end offensive talent, led by Samson Reinhart. The addition of Lemieux, Cornel, and Karabacek also add much-needed depth of talent to a previously thin group. After going hard of defense last year, the Sabres drafted only one blueliner this year, though Brycen Martin represented excellent value as a former first-round talent, and the addition of Johansson to a deep-but-unproven stable of goalies gives the Sabres another chance to find the potential netminder of the future.
What do you think, Sabres fans? Are there any areas the Sabres still need to address? Let us know in the comments, and clear your schedules for development camp next week.