Buffalo showed huge improvement last season with the growth of their young players and, of course, Jack Eichel. After a 23-51-8 season in 2015, tallying 54 points in the standings, they finished with 81 points and a record of 35-36-11 this season. That’s a 27 point upgrade. Their rebuilding process is definitely going in the right direction.
The offense tallied 201 goals last season, while the defense allowed 222. Obviously, the offense needed more of an upgrade. To help this, they acquired Kyle Okposo in free agency. He is a solid top 6 forward with the ability to score 20-30 goals in a season. They did still go after defense, though, acquiring Dmitry Kulikov for the back-end.
In the draft, they selected Alexander Nylander. He probably won’t be NHL ready this year, but he has a real up-side to his game.
With these moves, along with the growth of the young players, they could possibly compete for a playoff spot this season. I don’t think they’ll make it, but they definitely will be competitive. They have a very bright future ahead of them.