BUFFALO – Tim Murray’s first NHL trade deadline as general manager was a busy one. The Sabres made three deals, sending veterans Jaroslav Halak, Matt Moulson and Cody McCormick away. Murray also made one surprising deal, trading prospect Brayden McNabb to the Los Angeles Kings.
Here’s more from Murray:
On if today was a good day:
“I think it’s a good day. I think the combination of the picks that we’ve added and the young players we’ve added, I think it gives us a ton of ammunition heading into the draft, where there will be young players available that aren’t available at trade deadline day.
“A No. 2 24-year-old left winger is going to fall out with his coach after they lose in the first round, whatever the case may be. We have still a ton of picks to be players in that. We have young players to be players in that.”
On how far he is into the Sabres’ rebuild:
“I’m not done. This may be the roster we have for five years depending on who’s a coming free agent or whatever. But we have to add players. We have to create inner-competition, and this is the start of it. So the start of building, for me, was Friday (trading Ryan Miller and Steve Ott), and today was a continuation of it. There’s still a lot of building to do.”
On dealing McNabb and two second-rounders for young wingers Hudson Fasching and Nicolas Deslauriers:
“We need young forwards. The two forwards we got, we really like their future. … So it wasn’t a position thing, it was the two players. I didn’t come into today expecting to trade draft picks.”
On adding winger Cory Conacher off waivers:
“He was a free player. He didn’t cost us anything. He cares. He’s a good person. He’s a competitive guy. He can skate. There’s lots of things I like about him on the ice. He’s what I like to call a good complimentary player. If we had better players here to surround him, he’d be a better complimentary player.”
On dealing Halak, a goalie the Sabres acquired Friday:
“I would’ve considered keeping him if there were no trade offers that I liked. That was my course with all the pending UFAs.”
On Michal Neuvirth, the goalie the Sabres got back from the Washington Capitals for Halak:
“I like the goalie that I got back, plain and simple. He’s a young goalie that I’ve seen for a long time, played in the OHL. For whatever reason he’s a backup there. He’s just not as important as he wants to be. I think when he gets to feel some love again or whatever you want to call it and gets an opportunity, that he can get his game back. In saying ‘get his game back,’ his stats are pretty good now.”
On not worrying about making deals:
“We make lots of mistakes, but if you get paralyzed because you may make a mistake, then you’re never going to make a deal. You do your homework, you scout.”
Check back later for much more!