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Buffalo Sabres Top 25 Under 25, #7: Lawrence Pilut

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Pilut moves up sizably in Sabres prospect rankings

NHL: New York Rangers at Buffalo Sabres Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The Top 25 Under 25 is a collaboration by members of the Die By The Blade community. It was a combination of six staff writers and over 500 readers that ranked players under the age of 25 by September 1st, 2019. Each participant used their own metric of current ability and production to rank each player.

Lawrence Pilut saw some limited NHL time last season, and remains one of Buffalo’s top defensive prospects after a few call-ups from the AHL last season.

Last season, he was a comfortable offensive defenseman at the AHL level. His 26 points in just 30 games in a limited season is undoubtedly impressive, particularly as a rookie. He was reliable and earned his call-ups to the NHL. Although the offensive skill didn’t exactly translate in his limited NHL look, it’s okay - he’s still young, and has a bright future ahead.

Pilut underwent shoulder surgery in mid-May, which comes with a recovery time of five to six months. That likely means he’ll miss training camp, as well as the start of the season. Once he is finally ready to suit up, he’ll head to Rochester for starters and then ease his way back in, possibly back to the NHL if there’s a spot for him then.

Watching Pilut last season in his transition to North America was, quite honestly, fun. He made it seem like a smooth transition and showcased his skills both offensively and defensively. He certainly has what it takes to make it to the NHL, but with his surgery recovery, and the logjam on the Sabres defense, it’s unclear at what point he’ll be back in Buffalo.

(Hopefully sooner rather than later!)

#25 Miska Kukkonen

#24 Linus Weissbach

#23 Andrew Oglevie

#22 Jacob Bryson

#21 Casey Fitzgerald

#20 Marcus Davidsson

#19 Matej Pekar

#18 Ryan Johnson

#17 Mattias Samuelsson

#16 Oskari Laaksonen

#15 Arttu Ruotsalainen

#14 Will Borgen

#13 C.J. Smith

#12 Rasmus Asplund

#11 Tage Thompson

#10 Dylan Cozens

#9 Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen

#8 Henri Jokiharju