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Buffalo Sabres

Sabres First Round Failures #4; Leafs Murray On LTIR



The Buffalo Sabres have had some major successes in the NHL Draft, starting with their first franchise selection of Gilbert Perreault, to Hall-of-Famers Tom Barrasso and Pierre Turgeon, to their most recent top overall picks of Rasmus Dahlin and Owen Power, but where there is success, there is inevitably failure. For the next entry on the list of Sabres first-round failures, we look at a center that never played a game in the Buffalo organization.

#4 Artem Kryukov

In a season when the Sabres lost in the first round to Philadelphia in 2000, GM Darcy Regier at the NHL selected Russian forward Artem Kryukov 15th overall. Buffalo had visions of adding a big physical center in the 6’4″, 220 lb. Kryukov, but it appears the Sabres were going out on a limb and drafting more on a physical package than based on his accomplishments in Russia.

Kryukov had scored nine points (4 goals, 5 assists) in 15 games in the second-division Russian league in his draft year, but never really grew into anything more than a depth player, floating at various levels with 11 different teams over 18 seasons.  He never came to North America and retired in 2014.

Murray Out Indefinitely, Placed on LTIR

The Toronto Maple Leafs took one step toward rectifying their dire cap situation by announcing on Wednesday that goalie Matt Murray is out indefinitely and will be placed on Long Term Injured Reserve (LTIR).

The Leafs already have defenseman Jake Muzzin on LTIR and the addition of Murray will put them more than $2 million over the LTIR limit.

It is possible that the Leafs will trade Muzzin’s deal to a team looking to get to the cap floor, (similar to what the Sabres did last season taking on the final year of goalie Ben Bishop’s contract). Muzzin’s $5.625 million deal has one year remaining, but the money being paid out after Toronto played the signing bonus this month is significantly less, which might make his deal attractive.