The Buffalo Sabres acquire offensive defenseman Will Butcher and a fifth-round pick from the New Jersey Devils for future considerations. New Jersey will retain $1M of the $3.73M contract, so basically they are paying the Sabres a fifth rounder for taking $2.73M off their cap.
The Sabres Get: a decent puck-mover, but a rather weak defenseman. The advanced metrics have not been Butcher's friend these last three seasons. Last year he was one of the most sheltered players in the entire league, facing Quality of Competition near the bottom of the scale. He still lost possession.
Fantasy Players Impacted: Butcher can bring the production, but it will come at a cost. If paired with a defensive righty (Butcher shoots left) such as Henri Jokiharju then maybe this could work. Butcher would be the secondary PP option after Rasmus Dahlin. Dahlin, thankfully, also shoots left and so will likely not be partnered with Butcher (which would be a huge drag on his production).
As a left shot, he joins Dahlin, Robert Hagg, Mattias Samuelsson, Jacob Bryson and newcomer Owen Power, this year's first overall draft pick. Six left shots, with Jokiharju, Colin Miller and Oskari Laaksonen as the right shooters. Last season the only Sabres' defensemen to see more offensive zone starts than defensive ones were Dahlin and Jokiharju. Butcher absolutely cannot do defense, so one of those two will lose those precious even-strength zone starts, which in turn will cost them points.
Fantasy Players This Helps, In Order:
Fantasy Players this Hurts, In Order: