By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page

No. 32: March 10, 1980The Sabres trade Jerry Korab to Los Angeles for a first-round draft choice in 1982 (Phil Housley).

The Los Angeles Kings were more or less flailing in the water early in 1980. They essentially had been around the .500 mark for the past five years, and they had virtually no record of postseason success that would help them sell tickets in Los Angeles. But they did have Marcel Dionne at the peak of his powers, and they knew they needed to surround him with good players immediately in order to take advantage of his talents.

Therefore, general manager George Maguire offered to give up a first-round pick down the road for Jerry Korab, a veteran defenseman for the Sabres. Maguire needed to win immediately, and the 31-year-old Korab might help.

The plan worked for a season, as the Kings had 99 points in the 1980-81 regular season. But Los Angeles lost in the first round of the playoffs again, and the Kings didn’t get out of the second round of the playoffs until 1993. As for that draft choice, Los Angeles would have had the sixth pick in 1982, but it belonged to Buffalo. The Sabres took Phil Housley, who spent eight productive seasons in Buffalo and wound up in the Hall of Fame.

(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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