13. Buffalo Sabres Josh Bailey, C, Windsor (OHL)The Sabres have drafted other positions the past two years and lost Daniel Briere and Chris Drury via free agency before the 2007-08 season. An upgrade down the middle is desperately needed. Zach Boychuk is a possibility here. Bailey has pro size, though, and could be more physical.26. Buffalo Sabres (from San Jose) Luca Sbisa, D, Lethbridge (WHL) Swiss pro-sized defenseman played better as the season went on. Kyle Woodlief (Redline Report) 13 (Buffalo) - Josh Bailey. With Daniel Briere and Chris Drury long gone and Tim Connolly always injured, they've got to get their hands on a traditional playmaking center to distribute the puck to their talented young snipers on the wing. 26 (Buffalo) - Michael Del Zotto. He can be groomed as an offensive blue liner to replace Brian Campbell and run the PP. Jim Kelley (Sportsnet) No. 13 Buffalo Sabres: D, Luca Sbisa, Lethbridge The Sabres have a desperate need for a centre and perhaps an eventual replacement for goalie Ryan Miller whom they may have trouble signing, but the biggest problem is on the back end and barring a trade to move up (the Sabres have this pick and the 26th for having sent Brian Campbell to San Jose at the deadline) they'll go here. Sbisa is a Swiss native, but he played his junior hockey in Lethbridge. Nothing flashy, but solid in all areas and a possible replacement for Dimitri Kalinin whom the Sabres let go in part because of a contract dispute and in part because head coach Lindy Ruff tired of the Russian's inconsistent play. No. 26 Buffalo Sabres (from S.J.): D, Tyler Cuma, Ottawa A converted forward just like his coach, Lindy Ruff. A character guy like his coach and a no problem guy just like his coach wants. Not the best prospect, but hey, that's what you get when you scout off tips and TV. Mark Seidel (The Hockey News) 13. Buffalo Sabres – Colin Wilson, C; Boston University (NCAA) The run on defensemen in the top 10 means Wilson, a probable future captain, could fall to the Sabres. The son of former NHLer Carey Wilson, Colin’s play at the World Junior Championship showed he is able to dominate offensively, while still playing as a lock-down defender. 26. Buffalo Sabres –Jake Gardiner, D; Minnetonka (MN-HS) A personal favorite, it’d be shocking if Gardiner is still on the board at No. 26. But if he is, the Sabres will be pleased to get him. He is one of the best pure skaters in the draft and can use that ability to move the puck out of trouble much like a certain defender Sabres fans fell in love with before he headed to San Jose at the deadline. Allan Muir (Sports Illustrated)
13) Buffalo Sabres - Mattias Tedenby, left wing, HV71 Juniors (Sweden)
Central Scouting says: "Mattias is excellent on every shift. He has outstanding speed, stick work and work ethic. He is small but fearless -- he takes hits and always comes back. He creates scoring chances with his outstanding skating."
Our take: The Sabres would probably like to add some size at this position, but tiny Tedenby (5-9, 161) is impossible to pass over. Earning comparisons to Saku Koivu thanks to his speed and competitive drive, he has the potential to mature into an impact scorer in the NHL.
26) Buffalo Sabres - Jake Gardiner, defense, Minnetonka (USHS)
Central Scouting says: "He might be one of the best skaters in the draft. [A converted forward], he is smart with the puck, unselfish and careful. He is dynamic when he grabs the puck and goes. He has a very quick dangerous wrist shot -- he gets it away like Joe Sakic does."
Our take: After taking the BPA with their first pick, the Sabres can address an organizational need with Gardiner: size. Though he's got a lot of filling out to do at just 170 pounds, his build suggests he'll pack another 30-40 on his 6-2 frame in time. His hockey sense has been questioned by some, but it may simply be a matter of experience and coaching before it catches up with the rest of his tools. Gardiner will attend the University of Wisconsin next season.