The Sabres have used their first pick of the second round of the NHL Draft on Brendan Lemieux.
Lemieux is the son of four-time Stanley Cup champion and 1995 Conn Smythe Trophy winner Claude Lemieux. The Barrie left winger was impressive at the Scouting Combine, both in his work ethic and his maturity discussing his life in hockey as the son of longtime NHL agitator. He was also a junior teammate of No. 1 pick Aaron Ekblad.
Speaking to the media after being drafted today, Lemieux had this to say about being passed over in the first round: “They gave one of the more fiery guys in the draft a lot more fire.”
Of his father, Lemieux said: “I’m proud of his career and how hated he was.”
According to NHL.com, Lemieux in 2013-14 finished tied for third on Barrie with 53 points (27-26—53) and led the club with 145 penalty minutes. He paced the Colts with seven goals (7-3—10) in 11 postseason games before the Colts were eliminated in the second round by North Bay.
Buffalo was supposed to pick at 39, but it traded that pick to Washington to Nos. 44 and 74.
Pick 44 went to Peterborough center Eric Cornel.
“Cornel is a strong skater with NHL speed,” said Director of NHL Central Scouting Dan Marr on the online Scouting Report for Cornel. “He has a heads-up game carrying and moving the puck around, good vision and hands in traffic. He’s a very good playmaker, able to make plays while being checked and very effective winning faceoffs.”
At 49, the Sabres acquired Gatineau left winger Vaclav Karabacek, a native of Czech Republic.
NHL Central Scouting’s Chris Bordeleau had this to say about Karabacek:
“He can skate, shoot and make plays and he’s really strong on his skates. Every time I see him he gets a ton of chances, and that’s a credit to his desire to want to be the best.”
At 61, the first slot in the third round, Buffalo took goaltender Jonas Johansson from Sweden.
The Sabres kept the 74th overall pick (acquired from Capitals) and selected defenseman Brycen Martin of the Swift Current Broncos.
With their first pick in round 5, No. 121 overall, Buffalo took Massachusetts high schooler Maxwell Willman, a left winger. Willman has committed to Brown.
At No. 151, the Sabres acquired Michigan high schooler Christopher Brown, a center. Brown, a Boston College commit, is the son of former NHLer Doug Brown, a winger who played nearly 900 games.
The Sabres kicked off round 8 with their final pick, No. 181, which they used on Victor Oloffson, a Swedish right winger.