NHL Draft 2014: Buffalo Sabres select Sam Reinhart with No. 2 pick
The Buffalo Sabres finally reap the reward for being a terrible team this season, and snap up their center of the future.
With the second overall selection in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft, the Buffalo Sabres have selected Sam Reinhart, center from the Kootenay Ice of the WHL.
Reinhart comes to the NHL with elite playmaking ability - in fact, Sabres director of Scouting Kevin Devine called him the best young playmaker he's seen in the last 10-15 years. He's also got vision and hockey smarts coming out of his ears.
That's not to say he's a one dimensional player, as he's very proficient in his own zone, and has a good amount of locker room leadership from his time in Kootenay and Team Canada's World Junior squad.
We talked about why the Sabres should draft Reinhart a few days ago, and this is a great pick for the Sabres because it instantly adds elite offensive skill to their organization, something which they desperately needed. Reinhart will certainly challenge for a spot on the Buffalo roster next year, and if he does, he should jump right into the #2 or #3 center role.
Tim Murray said that Reinhart was #1 on their board, and with the way Kevin Devine was talking him up a month ago, I have to believe that's true. Murray said that he Sabres will continue to surround Reinhart with the best players possible, but one of the most enticing things about Reinhart (as with all great players) is that he makes the players around him better.
Does drafting Reinhart automatically get the Sabres out of the league's basement? Absolutely not. But it's another great layer to what is quickly becoming one of the best foundations for future long-term success in the NHL. once they make the playoffs, this pick should look even better, as Reinhart had an amazing postseason this year for Kootenay, and has shown very well in all his international tournament appearances.
What are your thoughts on Reinhart, Sabres fans? Did Tim Murray make the right pick? Let us know in the comments, and keep your browser ready for some more analysis or perhaps even another pick tonight.