BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – General Manager Jason Botterill sat at the podium and told reporters on a Wednesday there wouldn’t be a captain as the Sabres opened the season on Thursday.
However, prior to their morning skate the team announced four assistant captains: Jack Eichel, Ryan O’Reilly, Kyle Okposo and Zach Bogosian.
After signing an eighth-year, $80 million extension on Tuesday, Eichel said he wanted to take on more of a leadership role and be a guy the team can count on both on and off the ice – regardless of whether he wears a letter.
Combined, this group will look to lead the Sabres back to the postseason for the first time in six years and show improvement following a disappointing 33-37-12 campaign when they finished at the bottom of the Atlantic Divison.
Buffalo’s current playoff drought is the second longest active streak in the NHL. The Carolina Hurricanes are first having missed the postseason for the last eight years.
Puck drop on the Sabres season is set for 7 p.m.