The Sabres are still flirting with the idea of signing veteran defenseman Teppo Numminen, who remains an unrestricted free agent. Sorry, but this makes no sense to me. Numminen is a very good guy and a respected leader, but he's not the player they should want on a team looking to get younger.
He's 40 years old and played just one game last season after undergoing his second major heart surgery. You can't blame him for what happened last year, but he shouldn't have been re-signed in the first place. He wasn't worth the $2.6 million they paid him two years ago.
According to my count, there were 44 defensemen who were unrestricted free agents and remained unsigned. About three-quarters of them made $1.5 million or less last season, including bigger and younger players such as Karel Rachunek. I'm not saying they would lift all boats, either, but they also wouldn't come with the same risk.
--- Bucky Gleason