The Buffalo Sabres’ 2022-23 season was one of growth and progress, despite the team missing the playoffs for the 11th straight season. While many fans may be disappointed by the lack of postseason action, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the Sabres’ future.
Tage Thompson had another breakout season with the Sabres, solidifying his place in the leagues upper echelon of players. After struggling with injuries and inconsistency in his first couple seasons with the Sabres, Thompson took a significant step forward in his development. Building off of last seasons campaign, he set career highs in goals (46), assists (47), and points (93) while playing in 77 games for the Sabres.
Thompson’s combination of size, speed, and skill made him a valuable asset for the Sabres, and he provided a much-needed scoring punch to the team’s forward group. His strong play earned him recognition as one of the team’s most important players and a key piece of the Sabres’ future.
Another bright spot for the Sabres this season was the emergence of young forward Dylan Cozens. Cozens, who was selected seventh overall in the 2019 NHL Draft, also had himself a breakout season, scoring 31 goals, 36 assists and 67 points in 79 games. His combination of size, speed, skill and grit make him very important for the Sabres. Looks like the contract is going to work out on that one, eh?
Goaltending has always been an issue but not anymore. Devon Levi is a highly touted goaltending prospect in the Buffalo Sabres organization and is widely regarded as one of the best young goalies in the game. Levi possesses excellent athleticism, quick reflexes, and a calm demeanor in the crease, making him a formidable opponent for opposing shooters.
In 6 games so far this season, Levi is 4-2 with a .901 SV% and a 3.09 GAA. Look for those numbers to improve next season. Calder Watch: Devon Levi.
Rasmus Dahlin had another solid season with the Sabres, showcasing his elite-level talent and potential as a cornerstone defenseman. Dahlin remained a consistent presence on the blue line, logging significant ice time and contributing on both ends of the ice. One of the most notable aspects of Dahlin’s game this season was his high compete level, demonstrating a willingness to battle for pucks and play a physical style of hockey. Don’t believe me? Guess who leads the Sabres in PIMS.
His competitiveness and drive are traits that will serve him well as he continues to develop his game and become an even more dominant force on the ice. While the Sabres may have some work to do to return to the postseason, fans can take solace in the fact that they have a player of Dahlin’s caliber leading the way on the blue line.
But perhaps the most significant change for the Sabres this season was the sense of unity and camaraderie that developed within the team. Despite the losses and struggles, the Sabres remained a tight-knit group, supporting each other through the ups and downs of the season. This was evident in the team’s play on the ice, as they continued to fight and compete until the very end.
While the Sabres may not have made the playoffs in the 2022-23 season, they took significant steps forward as a team. With a talented young core, a strong goaltending future, the future looks bright for the Buffalo Sabres. If they can continue to develop and grow, it may not be long before they are competing for a spot in the postseason once again.