The Buffalo Sabres will have a new face in the lineup tonight when defenseman Jake McCabe makes his NHL debut against the Blues in St. Louis.
McCabe signed with the Sabres earlier this week. The 20-year-old University of Wisconsin product was the club’s second-round pick in 2012. He had 25 points in 36 games for the Badgers this season.
“It’s been a whirlwind here the past couple days with talks with Buffalo,” McCabe said, per NHL.com. “When I found out I was going to sign that day, I shipped out that night to Chicago and came to Buffalo, did a couple tests and came right here to St. Louis with the guys. It’s finally starting to set in now, being out there with everyone and putting on the Buffalo gear. It’s exciting. I think I’ll have some nerves, that’s for sure. I can’t wait to get out there tonight.”
What kind of player is McCabe? Here’s a talent analysis from Hockey’s Future:
For such a young player, McCabe thinks the game remarkably well. He possesses excellent vision and anticipates/follows play quite well. While his decision-making does need to improve, it should come with development and maturity. What makes McCabe so effective in defensive situations are his stick work and grit. Another notable characteristic of McCabe’s is his skating. He has good agility and moves well both north-south and laterally.
Related: McCabe named captain of USA juniors