Rasmus Ristolainen said he hasn't been able to enjoy hockey and that he has had talks with the Buffalo Sabres about his future with the team.
"Nothing had been decided," the defenseman told MTV Sport in Finland in an interview published Saturday that was translated by NHL.com. "All I can say is that come Sept. 12, I will attend an NHL team training camp. Don't know which team, though, at this point.
"We want to keep the discussions just between myself and the team."
The 24-year-old has three seasons remaining on a six-year, $32.4 million contract (average annual value of $5.4 million) he signed with Buffalo on Oct. 11, 2016.
The Sabres have been busy this offseason after missing the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the eighth consecutive season. Ralph Krueger was hired to replace Phil Housley as coach May 15, forward Jimmy Vesey (New York Rangers) and defensemen Colin Miller (Vegas Golden Knights) and Henri Jokiharju (Chicago Blackhawks) were acquired in trades, and forward Marcus Johansson signed a two-year contract as a free agent July 6.
But their future might not include Ristolainen, who was selected by Buffalo with the No. 8 pick in the 2013 NHL Draft. He had 43 points (five goals, 38 assists) and an NHL-worst minus-41 rating in 78 games last season, and has 194 points (36 goals, 158 assists) and a minus-143 rating in 424 regular-season games over six seasons, all with the Sabres.
"I haven't been able to help the team to win," Ristolainen said. "Last few seasons have been hard."