Right Wing Kyle Okposo

Power Forward Right Wing Kyle Okposo a six-footer who tips the scales at a solid 220 pounds had a dynamic season during the 2021-2022 campaign with 21 goals and served as one of the two Alternate Captains for the Buffalo Sabres.

All-Star Representative

Mr. Okposo scores Buffalo’s first goal of the 2021-2022 season and his 20th goal when his child was a “reporter” interviewing her dad on “Kids Day” at the arena and said, “Hi Dad, so can I call you Kyle, Mr. Okposo, Okie, what do you want?”.

They eventually settled on “Dad”

After Mr. Okposo scored a point or more per game for two seasons in the USHL and WCHA as a teenager, his next season he would play for three teams, half of his sophomore Div 1 season, the AHL for 35 games and his nine-game NHL debut.

A fan favorite on the Island and many were dismayed that he was not resigned.

The seventh selection in the first round of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft by the Islanders had a couple of 18 and 19-goal seasons and three seasons over 20 goals before signing with Buffalo.

Brilliant Card

The year Mr. Okposo was born in 1988 the Buffalo Sabres were led by Hall-of-Famers Mr. Dave Andreychuk, Mr. Phil Housley, and a thirty-something from the Islanders, Mr. Clark Gillies.

Leadership is crucial for this young corps of Sabres.

Now under his fourth Sabres head coach in HC Granato, Mr. Okposo has now been utilized for his consummate skills and experience and with one year remaining on his contract, this upcoming season could be his best year yet.

20 Times there was a sweep in the Stanley Cup Finals

It took 24 seasons from the inception of the NHL in 1917 before the first Stanley Cup Finals Sweep happened in 1941 when Boston swept Detroit and two seasons later Detroit swept Boston in the 1943 series.

In all there were five Stanley Cup Finals Sweeps during the 1940s with Toronto becoming the first NHL team to win back-to-back Stanley Cups with consecutive sweeps versus Detroit in the 1948 and 1949 Finals.

The only other decade to have five Stanley Cup Finals Sweeps was during the 1990s when Detroit also earned consecutive series sweeps with their back-to-back 1997 and 1998 Cup championships.

There are four NHL teams, (Toronto, Montreal, New York {Islanders}, and Detroit), that have won back-to-back Stanley Cups with consecutive sweeps and Montreal is the only team to have done so twice as well as completing a league-best six Stanley Cup Finals Sweeps.   

In over 100 NHL seasons of play, the 20 Stanley Cup Finals Sweeps all have taken place during a 57-season span from 1941 to 1998 making it 24 seasons since a Stanley Cup Finals Sweep has occurred.

Nine different NHL teams have earned a Stanley Cup Finals Sweep and 11 different NHL teams have been swept in the Stanley Cup Finals with one team getting swept in three consecutive Stanley Cup Finals by two different teams:

The upcoming season marks a Quarter of a Century worth of NHL seasons not producing a single Stanley Cup Finals Sweep highlighting the strength and parity of each team in the Finals.

10 Games To Watch This Upcoming Season

It is always interesting to see a player signed or traded away come back for the first game against their former teams and most Hockey fans will pay attention on December 9th when the Flames visit the Blue Jackets in Ohio to see how Mr. Johnny Gaudreau does in his first game versus his former team.

For October there are five interesting first games versus former teams worth watching beginning on October 14th  with probably the second most anticipated one to watch as Mr. Brent Burns goes back to San Jose as a ‘Cane.

Mr. Kevin Fiala has spent more NHL time in Nashville but has blossomed from a decent 20-goal scorer to his first 30-goal campaign for the Wild so a surprising signing with the Kings makes the October 15th matchup in Minnesota compelling.

A twin bill on October 21st highlighting Detroit and Chicago as Mr. Dominik Kubalik is signed away from deep-dive rebuilding Blackhawks and Seattle signed Cup champion Mr. Andre Burakovsky for the opening act in Colorado.

Carolina asked for and received multiple picks for Mr. Tony DeAngelo and a seventh-rounder marking the initial conflict between the newest Broad Street Bully against his former team in Philadelphia on October 29th for a divisional engagement.  

Two games in November add to the Holiday atmosphere with both contests being played on November 19th first the Capitals sign Cup champion goaltender Mr. Darcy Kuemper and take on the Stanley Cup Champion Colorado Avalanche in Washington.

Secondly, Calgary led by Mr. Jonathan Huberdeau and Mr. MacKenzie Weegar battle their former team Florida while the Panthers have former Flames Mr. Matthew Tkachuk to complete the night’s action in the Sunshine State.

The last two games one on New Year’s Eve have Toronto and Colorado partying in Denver on December 31st as Cup champion Mr. Nicolas Aube-Kubel signs with the Leafs for one year and one million dollars.   

The one game in 2023 on January 12th highlights the Winnipeg Jets coming into Buffalo to possibly face their former backup goaltender Mr. Eric Comrie.

Prospects Challenge 2022

The City of Buffalo will host the Seventh Annual Prospects Challenge at the LECOM Harborcenter beginning September 15th and skating through to the 19th ending a week before the Buffalo Sabres begin their pre-season schedule on September 25th on the road versus Washington.

 This year will be entertaining, informative and as always, exciting as there will be six NHL teams participating in the round-robin challenge, and not every team will play each other as Buffalo, Boston, Montreal, New Jersey, Ottawa, and Pittsburgh bring 14 first-round selections from the two previous drafts.

The Schedule:

Tickets go on sale early this month and at 10 dollars they represent a decent Hockey value to watch up-and-coming talent as we had in past Prospect Challenges with Mr. Dahlin, Mr. Thompson, and Mr. Olofsson providing an opportunity to observe the future.