The Buffalo Sabres are in need of a legitimate #1 center and Vincent Lecavalier would be a great fit.
Let's face it, Tim Connolly and Derek Roy are decent players but they are second or third line centers at best. Buffalo has not had a top line center since Daniel Briere, and he was not elite or even great.
Now I realize that Wayne Gretzky probably has a better chance of suiting up for the blue and gold than Vincent Lecavalier does, but lets play this scenario out a little bit.
It's no secret that Tampa Bay wants to part with Lecavalier. He has a huge ten year contract that counts almost $8 million per year against the cap. Of course, the first thought that pops into your head when you see that is, "no way the Sabres pick that contract up." I agree, but let's dream together.
For starters, Lecavalier is 6'4", 223 lbs. That is a Paul Gaustad with ten times more skill. Lecavalier has great size and great scoring ability. So far this year he has been average, but a change of scenery could work wonders.
The Sabres have started out pretty good this year, but do they have what it takes down the stretch and into the playoffs?
What Buffalo does have is the best goaltender in the NHL right now. Why waste the year Miller is having? Why not go out and significantly improve your team?
The biggest problem with bringing Lecavalier in is fitting his salary. The Sabres would need to move some bigger salaries and probably part with a prospect and/or pick. Tim Connolly or Derek Roy would probably be moved. Jason Pominville would also probably be leaving town along with Chris Butler.
I really don't see any other players that Buffalo could or would want to move. So let's package this thing up. Derek Roy, Jason Pominville and Butler or a first round pick.
I could live with that. I like Chris Butler, but with Tyler Myers emergence, he is more expendable. Also Connolly might be a more attractive player for Tampa Bay since his contract runs out sooner than Roy's. Also, a three team trade would probably be necessary as well.
So just think about what the Sabres would look like. Our top line would be Thomas Vanek, Vincent Lecavalier, and Drew Stafford. I like that line.
Darcy Regier would probably be the last GM in the NHL to pull off a trade of this magnitude, but what if he did? What if Tom Golisano said go out and get Vincent Lecavalier?
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