Even though Sabres GM Darcy Regier said, "Right now there's nothing imminent [on the trade front]," there are droves of Sabres fans, as well as (hopefully) upper management and ownership, who are left scratching their heads saying, "why not?"
The article in today's Buffalo News by Jon Vogl, rightfully points out some of the reasons why they are in a funk and should be looking to make a move--they've lost seven of the last nine and haven't won consecutive games since November. We could add that the team is in 11th place in the Eastern Conference, they just lost to the last place team in the conference, just barely got by a team that was in the bottom-five in the league (Edmonton) the other night, they are 18th in goals/game and 23rd in goals against/game.
Those are just the facts.
Something isn't right in Sabreland. I'm sure that when Ted Black used the term "Hockey Heaven" as a goal for the Sabres organization, he wasn't thinking about following the Dante Alighieri path to the promised land.
But, it would seem as if this is the case.
The Regier era has been marked by limbo and have been blown to and fro by inconsistency, without rest. Presently they're lying in slush by ceaseless rain and are being weighted down by huge money bags.
It might be a little over the top, but fact is Terry Pegula's grand scheme has gone awry and it will take some hefty changes, and probably a further decline into the pit, in order to right things.
Problem is, his GM doesn't think there's that big of a problem. When asked if the team is in need of a shake up, he responded, "I wouldn't call it a shake-up. If there's a move that makes sense for us, we'll do it if something is going to improve our hockey club."
(shrugs) Whatever. It's the same thing he's been saying for four and a half years.
Regier has been reluctant to change his team during the season between October and the trade deadline, and makes only token trades at the deadline (usually well after the 12:00 noon opening)--his soon to be patented, player for a 2nd-rounder maneuver.
Through the Vogl article, this gem about his talking with other GM's at this time, "Without specific rumors, there's truth to those rumors," Regier said. "But the price right now, and I think things will build between now and the trade deadline. I think teams that are going to be sellers are going to try and maximize what they can get for what they are selling. I think that will build as we get closer to the trade deadline."
So the price is high right now and will only get higher as the trade deadline approaches. And if he were after a player rumored to be available, like Anaheim's Ryan Getzlaf, he'll be waiting for, exactly what? The opportunity to pay more later?
Is it any wonder why Regier has gotten marginal (at best) players at the deadline?
Is it any wonder this team is in the funk it's in right now?
Is it any wonder why his immovable and invaluable "core" has been to the playoffs two out of four years getting bounced in the first round both times?
In so many words, as he's said so many times, this group, especially this core group, is good enough.
Ummm...ok...whatever you say, Darcy.