Monday, August 31, 2009

Remembering Afinogenov

Maxim Afinogenov has played for the Buffalo Sabres for 9 seasons, but will not be returning for next year. Well there is little demand for him to come back for another season, he played well during his time here and will be remembered fondly.

His jersey was always among one of the best selling on the team (and often in the league). He is a very good skater and stick handler, but never was quite able to finish and often wasted some very good opportunities that he created. But at the very least he was an exciting player to watch.

Now as a free agent it is surprising that nobody has signed him yet. While he has been a bit off the past two seasons, and would be expected to take a bit of a pay cut, there is no reason that Afinogenov should not be playing in the NHL again next year.

While his disagreements with Coach Lindy Ruff is reason enough for Buffalo not to take him back for one more year, he would be a very good third line player for some other team in the league. Perhaps Afinogenov has been offered more money to play in the KHL in his native Russia, and wants NHL teams to match that offer, which is not likely to happen.

For more on Afinogenov and his departure from the Buffalo Sabres see Top Shelf and The Willful Caboose.

With the exception of Drew Stafford who is still unsigned as a restricted free agent, the Sabres roster is pretty much set for next season, which is now only a month away.

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