Sam Reinhart was signed to a team-friendly bridge contract and we discuss just how team friendly the deal is for the Sabres. Not only does the deal keep Reinhart as a restricted free agent, but it sets the Sabres up to potentially sign him to another relatively modest AAV once the contract expires. Other topics of discussion include William Nylander's contract situation, a review of Buffalo's first two preseason games and the players who have carved out a good impression early on.
Hockey is finally back as the Sabres open training camp on Friday (technically Thursday) and there's finally quality depth battling for the few open roster spots in Buffalo's bottom six. We discuss the outlook on the Sabres entering training camp and the talent poised to fill out the Amerks lineup. The show opens with a discussion of the Senators batty tanking interview video, Steve Yzerman's decision to step down in Tampa and the Max Pacioretty trade between the Canadiens and Golden Knights.
I could think of no better guest to lead off the seventh season of The Instigator Podcast than The Athletic's Kris Baker. Kris joined the show to preview the upcoming Prospects Challenge and to offer up analysis on the current state of the Sabres prospect pool. Naturally we made time to discuss a couple of draft eligible goaltending prospects as well, because it just wouldn't be right if we didn't serve the goalie union during the episode. Thanks to Kris for coming on and I look forward to...
Jacquie Greco is back for another visit to The Instigator Podcast to discuss the big summer the Beauts have enjoyed and the expectations that accompany the acquisitions they've made. We talk about the strides the league has made and the momentum enjoyed in the wake of the Olympic Games along with discussing what's in store for the future of women's hockey.
Jason Botterill has made a habit of staying busy in the summer, including acquiring Jeff Skinner during a typically dead period for NHL deals. We take a look at the state of Buffalo's roster and depth chart after the most recent deal and reflect on the job Jason Botterill has done over the past 18 months as the Sabres general manager.
This is a podcast I've been wanting to do for quite some time. In addition to being the hockey brand I'm most loyal to, Warrior's unique Warrior VIP program is something I've found to be extremely interesting and I've wanted to chat with the team at Warrior about just that. Doug Todd joined the podcast to not only discuss the inner workings of the VIP program but also other aspects of the hockey equipment business, such as the way Warrior is building a customer base in the goaltending...
Jason Botterill was quiet on the free agent market as the annual swap meet opened but he's been very active on teh trade front since the draft. He set the table by acquiring Conor Sheary and then pulled off a massive deal with the Blues by dealing Ryan O'Reilly. We discuss the big return Botterill brought in for O'Reilly, especially the outlook on Tage Thompson. We also touch on the Sheary deal while highlighting what will come next for Botterill and the Sabres this summer.
Joe Yerdon of NHL.com joined the show to talk about the myriad of goaltending options available to the Sabres this summer. Joe and I chat about the pros and cons of this year's thin free agent market and just who makes sense for the Sabres to sign or trade for this offseason.
The draft has finally arrived and although there's no question about who the Sabres will select first overall, there's no clear picture on who will be selected at pick 32. We discuss some of the players who ought to be available at the top of the second round while working our way through the news of the week. Including Barry Trotz's resignation, the Domi-Galchenyuk trade and Mike Hoffman's departure from Ottawa.
Now that the Capitals have locked up their first Stanley Cup Championship the offseason can kick into full gear. There are a lot of rumors floating around and the Sabres are right in the middle of it all. We touch on the many rumors regarding Ryan O'Reilly while also touching on potential targets Jason Botterill could work to acquire in an attempt to turn the Sabres into a contender once again.
With the Cup Final upon us we decided to try a little different style of series preview. Rather than simply weigh the pros and cons of the Golden Knights and Capitals we look deeper into everyone's favorite talking point, Vegas' roster makeup and exactly how difficult they will be to knock off. We also touch on the new acquisitions for the Sabres as Rasmus Asplund, Victor Olofsson and Lawrence Pilut were all announced in recent weeks, giving a great deal of help to the team's pipeline.
Good friend of the pod Rob LaLonde was back in town and we got together to talk about how things are going with his company, Buttendz, as more and more NHL pros can be seen using Buttendz's awesome grips. We also discussed Rob's trip to the 2018 Winter Games and the work he's been doing with growing hockey programs in Korea, Japan, China and other growing hockey communities in Asia. Other topics include the Minnesota State Hockey Tournament, the Let's Play Hockey Expo and how influencer...
I had the opportunity to meet up with Matt Keeler who is the founder of a Buffalo-based hockey lifestyle clothing company called Just Dishin Hockey. We spoke about how he grew Just Dishin from his dorm room at St. John Fisher into the company it is today while also discussing various topics from around the hockey world including different levels of collegiate club hockey and how so many people underestimate the product offered in those leagues.
Rasmus Dahlin is poised to become a Buffalo Sabre after the lottery balls bounced Buffalo's way, winning the 2018 NHL Draft Lottery. We discuss our reaction to the Sabres winning the lottery and what the implications of adding a player like Dahlin means for Buffalo from a talent and roster construction perspective.
Very excited to present the newest Instigator Interview with former Buffalo Sabres, Columbus Blue Jackets, Atlanta Thrashers and Washington Capitals defenseman Jean-Luc Grand-Pierre. Jean-Luc joined the show to discuss his time in Buffalo, what it was like to transition to an expansion franchise and some of the work he's doing with youth hockey and the trends in youth hockey development today. It was an absolute pleasure to speak with him about these topics as he shared some excellent...
The playoffs are here and the Sabres are heading for the golf course. But that won't stop us from offering up our thoughts on the playoff field for 2018 and who we have as our Cup picks. Editor's note: We reserve the right to change our picks once it turns out our original predictions are incorrect.
The Sabres cleaned out their lockers after another ugly year and a few player had quite a bit to say as they looked back on the year. We break down some of the more outspoken reactions from Chad Johnson, Johan Larsson and Ryan O'Reilly. We also offer our thoughts on the tragedy in Humboldt and the outpouring of support from the hockey community.
On the heels of Alex Nylander being recalled, we discuss appropriate benchmarks for evaluating prospects and how his three-game trail will aid Jason Botterill in evaluating what he has in the 2016 first round pick. We also touch on Pierre LeBrun's recent report regarding Botterill's disappointment with his roster and some of the changes which might come about.
I was delighted to be joined by Goalie Gear Nerd for another edition of the Instigator Interview. Goalie Gear Nerd is one of my favorite social media accounts and he joined me to discuss the growth of his Twitter and Instagram accounts along with some more detailed discussion about the way goaltender equipment is trending today.
It's been a good week for the Sabres and signing draft picks. Will Borgen, Judd Peterson and Casey Mittelstadt all signed with the Sabres organization, putting to bed the ridiculous notion that the Sabres struggled to sign college players and that they'd ultimately lose their 2017 first round pick. Chris and Tyler discuss where Mittelstadt fits in the Sabres lineup, realistic expectations for his play and most importantly, the number he chose to wear.