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Buffalo Sabres

by | NHL Blogger
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Ryan Miller (Getty Images)  
Ryan Miller (Getty Images)  
Imagine an NHL without free agency or trades, that once a player is drafted with a team he stays with that team for his entire career. What would the rosters look like? We at Eye on Hockey will take a look at the Home-Grown Teams of all 30 franchises -- three lines, two defensive pairs and two goaltenders. Three lines and two D pairs because this doesn't include undrafted free agents, only drafted players. We want to see who has drafted the best.

Line 1: Thomas Vanek - Derek Roy - Jason Pominville

I wouldn't expect Thomas Vanek to ever score 40 goals agains but he's still an excellent top-line winger even if his contract is a bit large for the next two seasons. Derek Roy had a great career in Buffalo until he was traded this past summer for Steve Ott to add a bit of toughness to the Buffalo lineup.

Line 2: Drew Stafford - Tyler Ennis - Nathan Gerbe

Perhaps the smallest line in the NHL, at least as far as Ennis and Gerbe are concerned. But there's a lot of offensive upside here. Stafford has scored at least 20 goals in three of the past four years.

Line 3: Zack Kassian - Paul Gaustad - Clarke MacArthur

Paul Gaustad is one of the best face-off men in the NHL and provides some size down the middle. The Sabres shockingly were able to get a first-round draft pick for him from Nashville at the trade deadline last season. Clarke MacArthur has very quietly it seems scored 20 goals the past two seasons as a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Offensive scratch: Patrick Kaleta

Defense pairing 1: Tyler Myers - Brian Campbell

Tyler Myers was a bit of a disappointment this season but he still has huge upside and top pairing ability. Brian Campbell has always been a really good player with a really bad contract.

Defense pairing 2: Jan Hejda - Dennis Wideman

The Sabres originally drafted Dennis Wideman back in 2002 but never signed him. He eventually signed as a free agent with the St. Louis Blues and appeared in his first All-Star game as a member of the Washington Capitals this past season. He signed a huge contract with the Calgary Flames over the summer.

Defensive scratch: Mike Weber

Goaltenders: Ryan Miller - Jhonas Enroth

Same pairing as they have now, and it's a pretty good one. I don't know that Miller is as good as his reputation says he is (or as good as people think he is based on his 2010 Olympics appearance) but he's still one of the better goalies in the league and capable of carrying a team when he gets hot.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @AGretz on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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