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Leino

Christian Ehrhoff will sign another big contract soon. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Despite a manageable $4 million cap hit and $22 million of Christian Ehrhoff’s 10-year, $40 million contract already paid, the Sabres didn’t want to keep the defenseman.

Why?

If Ehrhoff retired early, the Sabres could’ve been charged a huge cap recapture penalty, as much as $10 million, according to capgeek.com. Imagine having that dead money eating up space when the Sabres need to lock up their youngsters in several years.

So the Sabres used their second compliance buyout on the final …

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Christian Ehrhoff's Sabres career lasted three seasons. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

PHILADELPHIA – In a surprising development, the Buffalo Sabres have started compliance buyout procedures on the final seven seasons of defenseman Christian Ehrhoff’s contract, according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie.

Update: The Sabres have confirmed the buyout.

The Sabres owe Ehrhoff two-thirds of the $18 million remaining on his deal. The team faced some stiff cap recapture penalties if the German retired before the contract ended in 2020-21.

The 31-year-old arrived in Buffalo three years ago today after the Sabres acquired his negotiating rights …

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Tim Murray discussed the Sabres at length Thursday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – In one week, general manager Tim Murray, like just about everyone else associated with hockey, expects stud defenseman Aaron Ekblad will be drafted No. 1 overall. Then the rebuilding Sabres have a franchise-altering decision.

Which slick prospect will they grab at No. 2?

“We’re taking the best player available,” Murray said Thursday inside the First Niagara Center.

Murray acknowledged the obvious, saying there’s a “very good chance” the Sabres will pick one of the dynamic centers available at the NHL Entry …

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The Sabres will be paying Ville Leino for six years. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Forward Ville Leino cleared waivers today, meaning the Sabres can officially use a compliance buyout on the final three years of the Finn’s massive six-year, $27 million contact.

The Sabres owe Leino two-thirds of the $11 million remaining on his contract. Leino’s $4.5 million salary cap hit is gone.

According to capgeek.com, the $7,333,333 Leino’s due will be paid out over six years at $1,222,222 annually. So, while Leino’s gone, he’ll stay on the payroll until 2019-20.

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The Sabres waived Ville Leino on Tuesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

BUFFALO – As expected, the Sabres placed Ville Leino on unconditional waivers Tuesday and will be using a compliance buyout on the final three seasons of the Finn’s six-year, $27 million deal, ridding themselves of perhaps the worst contract in NHL history.

Yes, the worst ever.

When he wasn’t battling a series of injuries, the 30-year-old forward produced only 10 goals and 46 points in 137 games with the Sabres, including zero goals in 58 appearances during a wretched 2013-14 campaign.

The Sabres …

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Ville Leino found the Sabres took themselves too seriously when he first arrived. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – With Ville Leino’s Sabres career over, here’s a timeline of the enigmatic forward’s short three-year run. Expectations started high and, well, quickly dwindled.

Leino, as you’ll see, was never afraid to speak his mind.

July 1, 2011, the day the Sabres signed Leino to his infamous six-year, $27 million contract and switched him from wing to center:

“I talked to him about all three positions, and he’s comfortable at all three,” former Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. “But his position that …

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Ville Leino's Sabres career is over. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – As expected, the Sabres have placed Ville Leino on unconditional waivers and will be using a compliance buyout on the final three seasons of the Finn’s six-year, $27 million deal, ridding themselves of perhaps the worst contract in NHL history.

Yes, the worst ever.

When he wasn’t battling a series of injuries, the 30-year-old forward produced only 10 goals and 46 points in 137 games with the Sabres, including zero goals in 58 appearances in 2013-14.

Sabres general manager Tim Murray, …

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Ville Leino's Sabres career could end today. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

While it’s hard to believe now, Ville Leino’s arrival in Buffalo almost three years ago was greeted with some fanfare.

Back then, Leino was one of the best free agents on the market. Awarding Leino a stunning six-year, $27 million contract was risky. The Finn only had one full NHL season under his belt. But the signing proved the Sabres wanted to bring in the best talent they could and gun for a Stanley Cup.

Of course, Leino proved to be the …

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Tim Murray discussed the Sabres' future bluntly Tuesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Tim Murray has thought about how an NHL team could tank a season. The general manager even discussed some scenarios with the media. But he has no intention of keeping the Sabres at the bottom of the league.

With a couple of franchise-altering talents available in the 2015 draft, plenty of teams could purposely field less-than-stellar lineups next year.

The Sabres, whose previous regime played for draft picks, won’t be among them.

“I don’t know how to do it properly, I …

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Tim Murray talks to the media this afternoon. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – In an end-of-season news conference that will likely become part of local lore, general manager Tim Murray bluntly discussed the Sabres’ future, tonight’s NHL Draft Lottery and took some not-so-veiled shots at the team’s old regime this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center.

He even mentioned the Sabres getting their “pee-pee slapped” by the league recently.

More on that later.

Here are some highlights from the 28-minute chat from Murray and Sabres coach Ted Nolan:

Murray on the New York Islanders GM …

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