By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page
Dave Andreychuk – Signed by the Sabres in 2000
The Sabres sensed that their window of opportunity was closing in 2000. They had a nice run in the late 1990s, reaching the conference finals twice and the Stanley Cup finals. Some of their players, like Doug Gilmour and Dominik Hasek, were both at least 36 years old. Perhaps a free agent could help.
Dave Andreychuk was ready to volunteer for the assignment. He had finished up the 1999-00 season with Colorado. The left winger had done his best work in Toronto with Gilmour as his center. He also had some family reasons for getting back to the Buffalo area. The former first-round pick of the Sabres (1982) signed a one-year deal.
The reunion had mixed results. Andreychuk scored 20 goals for the season, which ranked third on the team behind Miroslav Satan and J.P. Dumont. But sometimes he had trouble getting playing time, perhaps because Gilmour was frequently injured that season. Buffalo lost to the Penguins in the playoffs, Hasek and Gilmour left town in the summer of 2001, and Andreychuk departed too. The big left winger landed in Tampa Bay, where he helped the Lightning win a Stanley Cup. Eventually, Andreychuk was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Let’s take a look back:
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