In a surprising move, the Buffalo sabres have traded a third round pick, which was originally Minnesota's and is 76th overall, to the Nashville Predators for the rights to two-time Hobey Baker award finalist and 2016 award winner Jimey Vesey.
Vesey was drafted by the Predators in 2012, but continued his college career at Harvard through to completion and announced his intention to not sign with the Predators, but rather to seek free agency. As a college draftee who remained unsigned, he becomes a free agent on August 15 if Buffalo doesn't sign him before then.
It's not a sure thing. Vesey could decline again to sign with the rights-holding team. We won't know for sure until he signs his name to a contract, but there is no indication this was a conditional trade, so Buffalo seems confident.
Vesey had 46 points in 33 games in his final year at Harvard, showing a small decline from his previous year's goal scoring.
BUF GM on trading for Vesey rights: "Why not us? Why not give it a shot? We have a spot in our Top 6 for him. We had four 3rd-round picks."— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) 20 June 2016
More Tim Murray: "If I could've traded (rental) Jamie McGinn for Vesey's rights at deadline, I'd have done it. We'll give it our best shot."— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) 20 June 2016
The third-round pick BUF gave up for Vesey's right was third-rounder they acquired from ANA (originally MIN) for McGinn.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) 20 June 2016
Murray spoke to Vesey's agent Peter Fish to inform him of trade. Fish also reps Sabre Jack Eichel. Sabres/Pegula/Murray will make a pitch.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) 20 June 2016