The Buffalo Sabres showed steps of improvement this season, but they are still far from being a playoff team especially in a tough Atlantic division. If Buffalo wants to be competitive in their division, they will need to improve their roster drastically in both the draft and in free agency. This is what I would do if I were GM of the Buffalo Sabres.
Before the 2022 Draft, two trades are made
Buffalo Sabres trade Victor Olofsson, Dustin Tokarski to the Vegas Golden Knights for Evgeni Dadonov, Laurent Brossoit, Brendan Brisson, 2022 2nd round pick.
The Golden Knights are in win-now mode but they don't have much cap left and they need to dump both Dadonov and Brossoit's contracts, so for them to be able to get Olofsson in this deal is an added bonus. For Buffalo, they are banking on Dadonov having a bounceback season, Brendan Brisson to be a solid prospect down the road, and the scouts to draft someone to help the team in the 2nd round.
The Sabres also trade Colin Miller, Vinnie Hinostroza to the Washington Capitals for a 2022 6th round pick and a 2023 7th round pick.
The Sabres traded away two pending UFAs in Colin Miller and Vinnie Hinostroza for two draft picks.
The Buffalo Sabres draft 2 centers, 2 Left-wingers, 2 right-wingers, 3 defensemen and 2 goalies in the 2022 draft to boost their prospect pool.
Buffalo Sabres re-sign the following players:
Ukko-Pekka Luukonen-2yrs/2M per
Jacob Bryson-2yrs/1.7M per
Arttu Ruostalainen-2yrs/925k per
Buffalo Sabres sign the following free agents:
Johnny Gaudreau-7yrs/11.5M per
Josh Manson-4yrs/4M per
This is how the lineup looks like next season
2022-23 Buffalo Sabres
F: J.Quinn, J.Kemell, I.Howard, JJ.Peterka, B.McConnell-Barker, D.Goyette, B.Brisson, D.Buchelnikov, L.Persson
D: R.Chesley, S.Casey, E.Laakso
G: I.Blomquist, K.Reidler
With the moves made here, the Buffalo Sabres have not only made themselves better for next season, but for the next decade.