Of the three players the Buffalo Sabres received in the Ryan O’Reilly trade, Patrik Berglund has the most prominent NHL career to date, but what does he bring to Western New York?
There will be some fans and media alike, who will continue to debate if the Buffalo Sabres made the right decision in trading Ryan O’Reilly. However, this doesn’t change the fact he’s gone and — regardless of your opinion — it’s time to move on.
What is of more importance now, is using the pieces the Sabres acquired from the St. Louis Blues and putting them to good use. With two extra draft picks and three additional players, there’s certainly enough for the Swords to work with.
Of the three players, the one who has achieved the most in the NHL up to this point, is Patrik Berglund. The question is, what does he bring to Western New York and more to the point, what kind of impact can he have for the Sabres?
Berglund has spent all 10 seasons of his NHL career in St. Louis. And while he could never replaced O’Reilly in terms of his production, he at least provides better depth in the bottom-six.
The 30-year-old has been consistent and reliable throughout his professional career. He has 322 points (168 goals and 154 assists) in 694 games, along with another 26 points (10 goals and 16 assists) in 60 playoff appearances.
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Berglund has managed to reach 20 goals three times in his career. However, one of those was as recently as the 2016-17 campaign, when he scored a career-best 23.
The 2006 25th overall draft pick has an imposing build, so he can certainly make his presence felt. He is excellent with the puck and is just the type of two-way player the Sabres need.
About the only real concern regarding Berglund is that he can be somewhat injury-prone. For example, just this past season, he only played in 57 regular season games.
From a financial perspective, the Swedish native is a breath of fresh air for the Sabres. He has four years remaining on his contract, at a very manageable annual cap hit of $3.85 million.
As per Rotoworld, it’s interesting to note Berglund had a modified no-trade clause. In other words, he had to agree to the move, which means he actually wants to play in Buffalo.
"“He comes in the league as a first round pick, has been in St. Louis his entire career, has played a lot of different roles — power play, penalty killing, wing, center — and I think that versatility is something that we were really intrigued by.”"
Overall, there is a lot to like about Berglund. And he provides some much-needed veteran experience and leadership, which should help the Sabres’ young talent thrive.
What is your take on Berglund? What kind of impact do you predict he will have on the Buffalo Sabres? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.