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by Staff Writer / Buffalo Sabres

Prospect T.J. Brennan

With the first selection of the second round (31st overall), the Buffalo Sabres chose defenseman T.J. Brennan.

Brennan (6'0'', 204 lbs) is a New Jersey native who appeared in 68 games for St. John's of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League last season.  Listed by Central Scouting as a skilled defenseman, Brennan  scored 16 goals and added 25 assists to recorded 41 points to win the Raymond-Legace Trophy as the QMJHL's Top Rookie Defenseman.

I think he has tremendous upside," said general manager Darcy Regier.   "Our scouts watched a lot of video on him and really like his style of play."

Central Scouting Report on T.J. Brennan
A skilled defenseman… has a strong shot and gets it off often… has a very active stick and is patient on the point … is a strong skater with the ability to make good passes… needs to make better decisions when jumping into the rush.

Hockey Profile: Won the Raymond-Legace Trophy as the QMJHL’s Top Rookie Defenseman in 2007… ranked first among rookie defensemen with 41 points (16-25-41) in 68 games… was named Rookie-of-the-Month in February after positing 11 points (7-4-11) in 11 games… played for the Junior Elite Philadelphia Little Flyers under former NHLer Stephane Charbonneau in 2005-06, posting 32 points (9-23-32) in 42 games… didn’t start playing competitive hockey until the age of ten.

Personal Profile: Patterns his game after Toronto Maple Leafs’ defenseman Bryan McCabe – “he is very offensive and plays the body”… “fake shot on forehand, fake backhand and go back to forehand to shoot” is his favorite shootout move… admires his dad and says he has had the most influence on his career because he is “always there for support and has worked with me physically and mentally”… most memorable hockey game watched: 2000 Eastern Conference semi-final game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Philadelphia Flyers – Keith Primeau’s overtime goal came at 92:01 of overtime ending the third-longest game in playoff history and the longest since 1936… favorite hockey game played: St. John’s against Lewiston in 2006-07 season – “we came back from 3-0 to win 4-3 in regulation”… if he could invite three people to dinner they would be: his dad, Calgary’s Dion Phaneuf and Tiger Woods – “I admire my dad the most, Dion is my favorite player and Tiger Woods is the best mentally prepared athlete in any sport”… favorites include: Philadelphia Flyers (NHL team), Dion Phaneuf (NHL player), Dave Matthews Band (group), Remember the Titans and Miracle (movies), SportsCenter and Friends (TV shows) and Adam Sandler (actor).

06-07 St.John's QMJHL 68 16 25 41 79 4 1 1 2 4



The Buffalo Sabres opened the NHL Entry Draft picking defensemen with their opening two selections for the first time since 1986 when they chose blueliner Drew Schiestel 59th overall.

Schiestel (6'1'', 181 lbs.) is a quick, puck moving defenseman that scored six goals and added 15 assists for 21 points in 66 games for the Mississauga Icedogs of the Ontario Hockey League. 

The Hamilton, Ontario native recorded six assists in five playoff games last season.

Scouting Report: This unknown skating and puckhandling standout was buried on Mississauga’s last defense pairing .. long legs generate powerful and graceful strides .. hovers and then has an explosive burst of speed .. reaches top speed in seconds .. has good puckhandling ability and can lug the puck up ice effectively .. owns a good lead pass .. has a nice shot which he could use more often .. is capable of making the safe play but needs to show his steady side more .. likes to pinch sometimes over enthusiastically .. as a result gets caught deep but can catch his assigned forward because of skating ability .. solid in reverse .. has the potential to get better as he is very coachable ... Schiestel has interesting raw offensive upside as evidenced by his 6 assists in 5 playoff games, but he needs to discover an acceptable defensive game with time.  SOURCE: NHL DRAFT BUZZ

05-06 Mississauga OHL 40 1 4 5 42 -- -- -- -- --
06-07 Mississauga OHL 66 6 15 21 40 5 0 6 6 2


Buffalo moved to the offensive side of the ice in the third round selecting Corey Tropp at 89th overall. 

Possessing decent size (6'0'', 195 lbs.), the right winger scored 26 goals and 62 points in 54 games, while posting 76 penalty minutes for Sioux Falls in the USHL.  Tropp is a native of Grosse Pointe, Mich. and is set to attend Michigan State in the fall.

Personal Profile: Nickname is Roppel stemming from his last name… most memorable hockey games ever played: winning the 2004 National Championship and playing Des Moines in Game 5 of the 2006 playoffs in front of the home crowd… most memorable hockey game watched: the fight filled game, known as the “Brawl in Hockeytown", between the Detroit Red Wings and the Colorado Avalanche in their last match-up of the 1996-97 regular season in which the Red Wings came back to win in overtime… his parents and his first coach have had the most influence on his career… outside of sports he admires his dad because he is “great, honest and hardworking”… patterns his game after his favorite player, Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk because he is “unbelievable with the puck”… his pre-game rituals include always tying his left skate first… his favorite shootout move is “forehand toe pull to the backhand”… if he could have dinner with any three people they would be: former Detroit Red Wing head coach Scotty Bowman – “he’s one of the greats", Red Wing forward Pavel Datsyuk – “I love how he plays” and Darren McCarty – “great team guy and seems like he would be a nice, funny guy”… favorites include: Detroit Red Wings (NHL team), Entourage (TV show), NHL 2007 (video game), Any Given Sunday (movie), Jennifer Aniston (actor) and Goo Good Dolls (group)… has committed to Michigan State University.

05-06 Sioux Falls USHL 46 7 8 15 21 14 2 3 5 8
06-07 Sioux Falls USHL 54 26 36 62 76 8 4 9 13 0


Selection was traded to the Calgary Flames in exchange for a pair of fifth-round selections (139th and 147th overall) in this year's draft.


Buffalo selected goaltender Bradley Eidsness with the first of two fifth round selections.  Eidsness posted a 2.87 goals against average and a .907 save percentage in 48 games for Okotoks of the AJHL.

Central Scouting Report: A butterfly goalie with good flexibility… keeps his body upright in the butterfly position and covers the top of the net well… is very focused and tracks the puck well through traffic… has good rebound control… needs to improve his puck handling.

Hockey Profile: Finished his rookie season in the Alberta Junior Hockey League in 2006-07 with a .907 save percentage… was named to the 2007 CJAHL West Prospect Team… named as the Okotoks Oilers' Rookie-of-the-Year for 2007… before Okotoks, played in the Alberta Midget Hockey League where he was named the Top Goaltender in 2005-06 and was selected as the 2006 playoff Most Valuable Player… will attend the University of North Dakota in the fall of 2007.

Season Team Lge GP MINS GAA SO SV%
06-07 Okotoks AJHL 48 2658 2.87 4 .907


With their second fifth-round selection, which was acquired from Calgary for a fourth-round pick, the Sabres dipped into the QMJHL for the second time today. Buffalo took St. John's center Jean-Simon Allard (6'2'', 195 lbs.) with the 147th overall selection.

Central Scouting Report: A skilled forward with good size and versatility… has good skating ability and moves the puck well… has confidence on the point during the power-play… needs to improve the consistency of his effort… needs to use his size to his advantage more often.

Hockey Profile: Was third on his team in scoring with 50 points (12-38-50) in 2006-07… had five assists on Feb. 14, 2007, setting a new franchise record for most assists in a game and tied the record for most points in a game… won a gold medal with Team Quebec at the 2006 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge. Personal Profile: Wears #4 because of his favorite player, Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning… credits his father for having the most influence on his career and admires both his parents for their support – “it’s because of them that I am playing hockey”… most memorable hockey game played:World Under-17 final game – “we won and it was a good souvenir”… most memorable hockey game watched: “when Ray Bourque won his first Cup with Colorado” in 2001… napping before the game is part of his pre-game superstitions… if he could have dinner with any three people he would invite: Mario Lemieux,Wayne Gretzky and President George Bush… favorites include: Montreal Canadiens (NHL team), shot five hole (shootout move), NHL 2007 (video game), Brad Pitt (actor), Angelina Jolie (actress), Coach Carter (movie), Deal or No Deal (TV show) and Red Hot Chili Peppers (group).

Season Team Lge GP G A PTS PIM
06-07 St. John's QMJHL 65 12 38 50 47


Buffalo selected a 17-year-old center from Ottawa, Ont. with the 187th selection in the draft, the team's third pick from the QMJHL. Byron (5'10'', 140 lbs.) Appeared in 68 games for Gatineau last season, recording 21 goals and 23 assists for 44 points, while posting 46 penalty minutes.

During the playoffs, he added five goals and an assist in five games.


Buffalo chose Nick Eno of the Eastern Junior Hockey League with the team's seventh selection in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.  A larger goaltender (6'3'', 190), Eno posted a 3.60 goals against average and a .902 save percentage. 

Eno finished last season with a 9-14-2 record and a shutout.


With their final pick of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, Buffalo selected high schooler Drew MacKenzie out of the Taft School in Connecticut.  In 24 games, MacKenzie recorded three goals and 10 assists for 13 points.  He also posted 10 penalty minutes.

Central Scouting Report: A stay-at-home defenseman that is very reliable... has good mobility and quick feet... moves the puck with confidence and has good puck protection... has an accurate shot from the point… needs to increase his physical presence and needs to improve his strength.

Personal Profile: Wears #2 after his favorite player, former New York Rangers great Brian Leetch and patterns his game after Leetch because “he was a great leader and was very smart with and without the puck”… credits his dad as having the most influence on his career – “he always tells me to stay positive and that good things will happen if I keep playing my game”… admires his mom for being his biggest fan – “without her I would be nothing”… his pre-game rituals include taking a nap and drinking half of a Red Bull… his most memorable hockey game played: winning the 2005 U.S. National Championship in overtime… most memorable hockey game watched: Colorado Avalanche’s Stanley Cup victory in 2001 – “because Ray Bourque finally won his first Cup and could retire on top”… if he could invite any three people to dinner he would choose: Mark Messier,Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe – “they are the greatest players that have ever played the game”… favorites include: New York Rangers (NHL team), “five hole after a faked shot” (shootout move), NHL Hitz 2002 (video game), U2 (group), Jim Carey (actor), Happy Gilmore (movie) and The O.C. (TV show).


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