Heading into the offseason, the Buffalo Sabres have been surrounded by trade rumors for their two key assets, goaltender Ryan Miller and forward Thomas Vanek.
While both players have displayed their desire to leave if the Sabres are in a long-term rebuild, Vanek decided to comment publicly on the rumors that surround him and has stated that at this point he expects to be in Buffalo for training camp in September.
“As of right now, yeah. I haven’t heard anything differently," Vanek stated. "I’m preparing myself like I’m going back to Buffalo
, so that’s what I’m doing."
Last season, the Sabres traded veteran players away before the trade deadline and have said they are going to build around a young core to start fresh. Many thought that Vanek would be one of the players to go considering his value around the league.
“I’m not flattered by (trade speculation) by any means," Vanek said. "I’ve enjoyed my time in Buffalo
and I’m looking forward to going back. In this business you can’t look into that stuff, read the internet or look at the papers too much. If something happens, I’m sure my agent or the GM in Buffalo
will call me and tell me where I’m going.”
Despite the 'rebuilding' status that the Buffalo
Sabres have, Vanek feels that if the Sabres can still compete, this could be the place for him to stay.
“We’re rebuilding, and I’m hoping we have the right pieces to accomplish something. I’m not saying I’m old. At 29, I’ve still got many years left,” Vanek explained. “But at the same time, you like to be on a team where you feel like going into camp you’re contending. You’re not guaranteed to win a Cup, but right now in Buffalo
I think we’re rebuilding which is not the best case scenario for me. But at the same time, there’s a lot of good young players and hopefully we pick the right ones.”
Vanek is in the final year of his contract and will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the upcoming season.
, Buffalo Sabres