The Buffalo Sabres had an interesting deadline day, to say the least.
After several hours of inactivity, GM Darcy Regier made his first move around 2 p.m., sending defenseman Nathan Paetsch and a 2010 second-round draft pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets for forward Raffi Torres.
Torres has 19 goals and 12 assists in 60 games this season. The gritty forward is known for his hard skating and even harder hitting.
MacArthur has just three assists in his last 11 games and no goals.
Adding Torres and getting rid of MacArthur was a great move for the Sabres who could use some tenacity up front. Torres will provide the necessary offense and defense needed on any of the Sabres’ top three lines.
“I’m excited,” Torres told TSN’s Trade Centre today. “They’ve got a playoff group, and I’m just hoping to come out there and help them along the way.”
While the trade for Torres will certainly help Buffalo for a potential playoff run, the biggest question is why didn’t they deal for another defenseman or backup goaltender?
Defenseman Toni Lydman was rumored to be on the move earlier in the week, but at the end of the day he was still in a Sabres’ uniform.
Lydman, an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, has just 12 points this season and has been a defensive liability all year.
With defensemen like Derek Morris, Dennis Seidenberg, and Steve Staois available, and Mike Weber waiting in the AHL for the call up, it is a mystery as to why the Sabres didn’t ship Lydman out of Buffalo.
A lot of people thought a new backup goalie, perhaps Martin Biron, was headed to Buffalo to as well. But Buffalo decided to hold onto the struggling Patrick Lalime for the remainder of the season.
Not trading for Biron, or even Dwayne Roloson, can be attributed to the Islanders losing Rick DiPietro to a knee injury for the 85th time in the last six years or so.
But there were other goalies available—which is obvious from the four goalies that were moved today—that the Sabres could have used.
After tonight’s 3-1 loss to the Washington Capitals, the Sabres have 14 games left in March. Ryan Miller better find a way to get his rest or Buffalo will have a very long month ahead of it.
At the end of the deadline, the Sabres came out ahead of where they were—but not by much.