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Buffalo Sabres Don’t Expect to Move up in Draft, Ryan Miller, Thomas Vanek and Buyout Updates

June 21st, 2013 at 10:48 AM
By Anthony Custode Jr

Buffalo Sabres general manager Darcy Regier addressed the media Thursday to discuss the upcoming draft, as well as the futures of Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek.

The results; Regier squashed rumors that the Sabres would move up in the draft, and offered the same response on Miller and Vanek as he had when the season ended.

"I would characterize the draft, and the ability primarily to move in the draft, to move up into those top spots, will be extremely difficult, if not impossible," Regier said. "Given the conversations I had as recent as (Wednesday). We've also talked to teams behind us, since we have (picks) 8 and 16 in the first round, so we're exploring all the options, we're continuing to try to move up, but as I said, it appears now that teams are getting more locked in to keeping the pick and making the selection."

The Sabres were rumored to have been in contact with the Colorado Avalanche in regards to the No. 1 pick in the draft, but it appears those talks, if they were happening, have broken down. 

As for Miller and Vanek, Regier offered little information that hasn't already been reported. He said the team would like to keep both, but also used his newly coined phrase that the team is "exploring all options."

"We're going to explore all the available options, and I have been." Regier said. "I'll continue to do that, and one of those options is that those players will remain here next year."

Miller and Vanek each have one year remaining on their contracts, and, given their ages, are unlikely to be interested in participating in a long rebuilding process. However, Regier says he would rather not move either player.

"They're exploring their options as well. Part of that is predicated on what we do organizationally," Regier said. "I think they are going to evaluate from their side. I did speak with Ryan's agent last week, and so we've had that dialog. I will see and speak with Thomas' agent. I probably will speak with the players individually over the next while as well. Ideally, I would like to keep them here, yes, both of them."

Another topic looming over Regier's head is the compliance buyout option. Each team was given the ability to use two compliance buyouts when the CBA was finalized, in an effort to help teams comply with the terms of the CBA. Each team has 48 hours after the the conclusion of the Stanley Cup Finals to make a decision on whether they will exercise their buyout option. Regier said the Sabres have no plans as of yet to use the option to buyout a player. However, he didn't back off the idea that if Ville Leino were healthy, he would actually become a buyout option.

"Ville continues to workout and is progressing. I see him every day. He's going in the right direction and at this point we do not plan on buying him out," Regier said when asked if Leino was even healthy enough to be considered a buyout option.

Regier also confirmed that Leino had a "procedure" which leaves the impression that he may not be healthy enough to be considered a buyout option. 


Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Sabres, Darcy Regier, Hockey, NHL, Ryan Miller, Thomas

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