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Buffalo Sabres Player Grades - Week ending 10/30/16

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Three stars, and three goats, from last week

NHL: Minnesota Wild at Buffalo Sabres
Dan Bylsma and the Buffalo Sabres
Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

We had a good turnout this week with 250 votes in. The votes have been counted and recounted, and here are your Buffalo Sabres three stars and three goats from the last week of hockey (in alphabetical order) -

Click here for last week’s report.

Three Stars

Kyle Okposo (4GP, 3G, 1A, +/-0, 51.61%)

4.62 - Easily the Sabres’ player of the week, and second straight week he’s on the upper part of this list. He scored goals, played like he belonged on the top line and so far has been justifying his billing as one of the top unrestricted free agents from this summer.

Robin Lehner (1GP, 1W, 0L, 0OTL, 1.00GAA, 0.974SV%)

4.05 - Only played one game, but looked strong in it after bouncing back from a stomach ailment. Still has some weaknesses in his game (rebound control, short side), but has looked good this season after losing some weight over the summer.

Anders Nilsson (3GP, 1W, 1L, 1OTL, 1.95GAA, 0.937SV%)

4.00 - Was unfortunate to not have more wins to his name last week after the Sabres’ collective brain-farts against the Flyers and the no-show against the Wild. Last season Chad Johnson impressed when he stepped in for Lehner, and so far Nilsson is getting the job done too.

Three Goats

Nicolas Deslauriers (3GP, 0G, 0A, -1, 30.77%)

1.81 - Do you get dropped from the line-up if you show up here enough times? Bylsma, are you listening? Right now De-Lo brings absolutely nothing to this team and while we wish him well with his injury, we’re not eagerly waiting for his return either.

Hudson Fasching (4GP, 0G, 0A, -1, 35.42%)

2.22 - It’s the fourth line ignominy it appears. Fasching hasn’t been doing much even strength, and before his injury, was playing a bigger part in the special teams units than anything else.

Derek Grant (4GP, 0G, 0A, -1, 42.86%)

2.20 - And right on cue, here’s another bottom-six forward. There’s a reason these guys are on the fourth line, just saying. By the way, Grant has been a big part of why the Sabres are #3 in the League in faceoff win percentage, with the center clocking in at 58.9% on 90 faceoffs.

Coaching & Special Teams

Dan Bylsma (4G, 2W, 1L, 1SOL, 9GF, 9GA, CF 46.18%)

3.02 - Bylsma comes in at bang in the middle, which is probably no surprise. The Sabres were grotesque at times to begin the week, and then looked very good to record back-to-back wins over the weekend.

Power Play (#6, 4 goals in 11 attempts, 36.4%)

4.09 - The power play continues to look pretty good once they’ve had an opportunity to set up, with Matt Moulson looking like a player reborn this season.

Penalty Kill (#11, 13 kills in 16 attempts, 81.3%)

3.53 - If you remove the three goals given up against the Flyers, this unit would have been perfect. That game aside though, the PK unit has been pretty decent.

NB: There was an unfinished discussion about Corsi numbers to be displayed when the poll goes out at the end of the week. Right now we’re showing Corsi For %, but I’ve seen Corsi Relative as a request too. Any more thoughts on this?