The Buffalo Sabres have sent the No. 2 overall pick at last year’s draft, Sam Reinhart, to their AHL affiliate in Rochester.
The assignment, first reported by Reinhart’s WHL Kootenay team, will extend the 19-year-old’s season by at least a couple of weeks. Rochester has six regular-season games left, starting tonight against Lake Erie; the club won’t be making the Calder Cup playoffs, however, so Reinhart’s campaign will essentially end when the Amerks play their final game on Apr. 19.
Still, it promises to be an intriguing two weeks.
Reinhart achieved a remarkable level of success this year, making his NHL debut for the Sabres in October and playing nine games before heading back to Kootenay. There, he scored 65 points in 47 games — adding another nine in seven playoff appearances — and, in January, helped Canada capture gold at the 2015 World Juniors, where he was named to the tournament all-star team after scoring 11 points in seven games.
Reinhart is expected to challenge for a spot in Buffalo next season, and many project he could end up skating on a line with Evander Kane, acquired from Winnipeg in February.