21-Year-Old Defenseman – Buffalo Sabres
Rasmus Ristolainen Contract Information:
Signed an entry-level contract with the Sabres in July of 2013.
Ristolainen picked up an assist and was plus-2 with five shots in Thursday's 3-2 shootout loss to the Blues.
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Rasmus Ristolainen: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
The 19-year-old Ristolainen is Buffalo’s top-rated young player on defense, and will likely remain with Buffalo for the entire season in 2014-2015. Though his production was muted in his 34 games with the Sabres last season, Ristolainen was a key player for the team’s AHL affiliate in Rochester, scoring 20 points in 34 games. Ristolainen is at the forefront of the Sabres’ rebuild and is poised to make a greater impact this season. There will be growing pains as Ristolainen develops into a franchise defenseman, but if everything goes right, he should emerge as the Sabres’ best defenseman by season’s end.
Keeper leaguers should familiarize themselves with Ristolainen, the 8th overall pick in Juneï¿½s NHL Draft. The 6ï¿½3ï¿½ defenseman is expected to compete for a spot with the Sabres this fall after posting 15 points in 52 games for Turku in the Finnish league last season. Ristolainen is one of the top prospects among defensemen in all of hockey, with strong mobility and a cannon from the point. Since Ristolainen is just 18 years old, you should temper your expectations in one-year leagues, but be ready to pounce if he makes the big club and starts strong.