TRAVERSE CITY, Mich.
-- New ownership has apparently instilled new fervor and optimism in the prospects for the Buffalo Sabres
The top three players within Buffalo's system -- forwards Zack Kassian
, Luke Adam
and Marcus Foligno
-- are playing a vital role for the Sabres during their anticipated debut at the Traverse City Prospects tournament this week here at Center ICE Arena.
Kassian, a physical 6-foot-3, 226-pound right wing, was taken in the first round (No. 13) of the 2009 Entry Draft and inked a three-year entry-level deal with the Sabres in November 2010. Foligno, whose father, Mike, was a former fan favorite in Buffalo, agreed to terms on a three-year deal in May.
Adam, perhaps the most NHL-ready of the bunch after playing 19 games for Buffalo in 2010-11, signed his entry-level contract in April 2010. In Buffalo's tournament-opening 6-3 victory against the Minnesota Wild
prospects on Saturday, Adam centered Foligno and Kassian. They combined for three points.