Sabres sign Marcus Johansson

Sports

St. Louis Blues’ Alexander Steen, right, defends against Boston Bruins’ Marcus Johansson, of Sweden, during the second period in Game 7 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Final, Wednesday, June 12, 2019, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

BUFFALO, N.Y (WIVB) – General Manager Jason Botterill continues to make upgrades to the Sabres roster.

On Saturday, the team announced they signed Marcus Johansson to a two-year, $9 million contract.

A former first round pick by the Washington Capitals in the 2009 draft, Johansson has made the postseason in nine of his 10 years in the NHL.

During development camp, new head coach Ralph Krueger expressed the importance of building a strong culture and adding players who had postseason experience.

Johansson joins defenseman Colin Miller, who the Sabres traded for in late June, as players with qualities Kruger was looking for. The 28-year-old forward played in 22-playoff games as the Bruins advanced to the Stanley Cup Final.

Buffalo currently has the longest playoff drought in the NHL, having missed out of the playoffs the past eight years.

During the regular season, Johansson split time between the Devils and Bruins and scored 13 goals and added 17 assists in 58 games.

A versatile forward, Johansson could pivot the Sabres second line, a position that would help Casey Mittelstadt’s continued development in his second season as he works as the team’s third line center. However, the last five seasons, Johansson seen his time at the face-off decrease. He’s taken taken just 202 total face-offs over that span and spent more time on the left wing.

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