By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page
Christian Ehrhoff – Signed by the Sabres in 2011
When the Sabres’ management thinks about Christian Ehrhoff, the idea of signing checks probably comes to mind. And more checks. And more checks. Big, expensive checks.
Ehrhoff came out of Germany to sign in 2003 with the San Jose Sharks, where he displayed some offensive talent. Ehrhoff spent five years there before he was traded to Vancouver. In 2010-11 he set a career high for points in a season with 50. That’s when he became a free agent, and the Sabres couldn’t resist. They signed him to a $40 million contract over 10 years. Ehrhoff had hopes that he had joined a contender, but instead he was playing for a team that wouldn’t make the playoffs after he signed in 2011.
Ehrhoff spent three seasons in Buffalo, and peaked in 2013-14 with 33 points. The Sabres were afraid of a huge cap hit if Ehrhoff retired early, so they used a compliance wipeout on the last seven years of his deal. The defenseman left as an unrestricted free agent, and played with three more teams before retiring from the NHL in 2016 and returning to Germany for two final pro seasons. Meanwhile, the Sabres have been paying him about $850,000 a year, and will continue to do so through 2028. That’s a mighty good pension plan.
Here’s one of his good moments here:
(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)