I think what is broken is Botterill. He has done a very poor job so far. He traded Ryan O'Reilly for basically scraps. A trade that was widely criticized when it was made. The pick they will get for O'Reilly will be close in value to the pick they gave up for in acquiring Skinner. Berglund who retired mid-season and Sobotka were vastly overvalued by Botterill and instead of providing veteran depth like Botterill had expected, the were both net negatives. Sobotka had some the worst advanced stats this past season. Tage Thompson who was about the 5th best prospect in the Blues organization, Thomas, Dunn, etc, I would say is unlikely at this point to develop into a top 6 forward. He may have a hard time sticking in the NHL all together. So you basically gave up one of the top 3 two way centers in the league for a late first round pick and a average prospect. Not a blue chipper at all. That is just terrible asset management. If he was mandated by ownership to make a move before the bonus kicked in that is one thing, and we have a whole other problem we didn't think we would have with the Pegulas at the helm. If there was no mandate, it is hard to have any confidence at all in him going forward. It is an all time bad Sabres trade.
Think of it this way, If we don't re-sign Skinner, we basically gave up almost all the value from pick we received in the O'Reilly trade. How does this look:
1 year of Jeff Skinner where you don't make the playoffs
29th overall pick in 2019
To other teams:
36th overall pick in 2019
3rd round pick in 2020
Botterill's handling of Skinner was another one. I am always in favor of paying guys right away when you trade for them. Good Gm's do it all the time with guys they trade for and have one year left on their contract. If you go without signing them it is guaranteed that you will pay more in the future. Skinner has been a pretty consistent scorer and we should have got a deal done right away. The market at that time was 7 years, $7 million per for a player of his caliber. That is what Kane got. Botterill waited and waited and couldn't make it happen. Now you are looking at an 8 year $8-9 million deal to keep him. If he walks, it will be a like a mini Briere/Drury and the Sabres will look foolish. If he stays, you just payed an absolute premium to keep him. If Botterill knew he wasn't close to a deal, he should have traded him at the deadline. Teams were giving up firsts this year and we would have had a nice return. Of course Botterill would have been the one negotiating, so maybe we wouldn't have.
Then there are the stupid add-ons like we can't trade Matt Hunwick, or we will have to give up more. Seriously WTF was that? Matt freaking Hunwick. Also the insanely stupid Reinhart bridge deal that will end up costing us probably around 2-3 million more in cap space for what were suppose to be the cup window years lmao. If we do re-sign Skinner, you will have to give Reinhart more in two years.
I think Botts is in over his head and should have stayed an assistant. I have no confidence in the guy.