Buffalo Sabres logo with headline Jeff Skinner rumors
Could the Sabres buyout Jeff Skinner's contract? We examine the pros, cons, and cap implications of this tough call.

The Buffalo Sabres made significant strides in the 2023-24 season, but a playoff appearance remains elusive. Now, General Manager Kevyn Adams faces a tough decision: what to do about Jeff Skinner’s albatross of a contract.

Skinner’s offensive production has steadily declined in recent years, causing many to question the value of his remaining three seasons at an eye-watering $9 million cap hit. His full no-movement clause adds further complications.

3 Reasons the Buffalo Sabres Might Buyout Jeff Skinner

1. Declining Production Skinner’s goal-scoring prowess has waned, and with it, his overall impact on the ice. To justify his salary, Skinner needs to be a top-line scorer, but his performance no longer merits that position.

2. Salary Cap Flexibility Buying out Skinner would create considerable cap space, allowing the Sabres to pursue impact free agents or upgrade their depth. The cap penalties for a buyout are substantial, but Buffalo could spread the pain over several years.

3. Opportunities for Young Players Skinner’s presence on the roster potentially blocks opportunities for the Sabres’ rising stars. A buyout would pave the way for forwards like Dylan Cozens and Jack Quinn to take on greater responsibility within the top-six forward group.

A trade offers a slim possibility of relief, but Skinner’s salary and no-movement clause make finding a suitable trade partner virtually impossible without significant salary retention by Buffalo.

Ultimately, the Buffalo Sabres have reached a crossroads with Jeff Skinner. Whether they persevere with a declining star or embark on the costly path of a buyout could be a defining decision in their quest to return to the playoffs.

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