We asked, and you voted. Over 500 Die By the Blade readers and Buffalo Sabres fans cast their votes for the Buffalo Sabres’ All-Decade Team, to choose the best players who suited up for the team in the last decade!
Without further ado, here are the winners:
Forward: Jack Eichel (430 votes) - This one’s a no-brainer, even though Eichel only played for the Sabres for half of the decade. His impact on the team has been undeniably huge, and a whopping 84.3 percent of fans who voted, selected Eichel as one of their three forwards. Sure, there’s likely some recency bias to take into account here, but let’s face it, when you think of the Sabres in recent years, you think of Jack Eichel.
Forward: Thomas Vanek (325 votes) - Again, not really a shocker. Vanek was a huge part of the Sabres for so many years, but in reality, he only played two and a half seasons with the Sabres in the last decade. Since leaving Buffalo, he’s played for eight different NHL teams, and isn’t playing at all this season.
Forward: Jason Pominville (214 votes) - An easy fan favorite, Pominville played for the Sabres in parts of five seasons of the last decade, split by a jaunt in Minnesota. Pretty much everyone was excited when he came back to Buffalo, and some are even calling on the team to sign him today.
Notable Mentions: Ryan O’Reilly (112 votes), Sam Reinhart (68 votes), Jeff Skinner (47 votes)
Defender: Rasmus Ristolainen (255 votes) - Wow, y’all really like Risto, apparently. Half of the fans who voted in our poll selected Ristolainen as one of their two defensemen. He played parts of seven seasons with the Sabres in the past decade and is growing closer to reaching the 500-game mark in the NHL.
Defender: Rasmus Dahlin (173 votes) - I’m not sure how much of this is recency bias versus actually picking Dahlin over some of the other choices, but Dahlin’s impact in Buffalo is undeniable, and it’s no surprise that he ends up on this list despite only being in his second season.
Notable Mentions: Tyler Myers (149 votes), Henrik Tallinder (121 votes)
Goaltender: Ryan Miller - Absolutely no surprise here. Miller was hands-down the Sabres goaltender of the last decade, and it’s shown by the fact that 87.8 percent of the goaltending votes - 448 of 510 responses - went to him. Although Miller has moved on and is now playing with Anaheim, it’s safe to say he still holds a special place in many Sabres fans’ hearts.
Notable Mentions: None, really.
So... were these the players you picked? Do you agree with the overwhelming majority? If not, who do you think were the Sabres’ best players of the last decade?
P.S. Shoutout to the 19 people who voted for John Scott, but this isn’t the NHL All-Star Game.