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Buffalo Sabres 2016 Trade Deadline Primer - Draft Picks & Expiring Contracts

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Under two weeks to go to the trade deadline, and here's the ammunition the Sabres are working with.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL trade deadline is at the end of this month, 3pm EST on 29th February to be precise. With just under two weeks to go to that date, now is as good a time as any to review the draft picks that the Buffalo Sabres and the rest of the NHL teams have in the upcoming 2016 NHL Entry Draft.

2016 NHL Draft Picks

Image courtesy of ESPN

The Sabres have been better this season than in the last two abysmal seasons that ended in netting Sam Reinhart and Jack Eichel close to the top of the respective drafts. However, despite the better possession and defense being preached by coach Dan Bylsma, Buffalo still has some distance to go before becoming a playoff contender.

Buffalo could be looking for a left-hand defenseman who could play top pair minutes, as well as scoring depth on the wings. The goaltender position is contentious, with fans clamoring for better play from the position, but there's also plenty of depth in Buffalo's prospect pool.

Unrestricted free agents: Jamie McGinn (LW); David Legwand (C);  Mike Weber (D); Carlo Colaiacovo (D); Chad Johnson (G).

Restricted free agents: Marcus Foligno (LW);  Nicolas Deslauriers (LW); Zemgus Girgensons (C); Johan Larsson (C); Rasmus Ristolainen (D); Jake McCabe (D).

General Manager Tim Murray has shown his willingness to trade in the past, and it would be no surprise to see him offload a few more veterans and players on expiring contracts ahead of the deadline, though it is unlikely he will be involved in any blockbuster deals of the ilk that brought Ryan O'Reilly and Evander Kane to Buffalo.