By Taylor Nigrelli
The Buffalo Sabres took a baby step in the rebuilding process Saturday as the club announced it has agreed to terms with first-round draft pick Sam Reinhart.
The deal is an entry-level contract, stretching over three years and, according to a Buffalo News source, paying the maximum $925,000 per season.
The British Columbia native, whom the Sabres selected second overall in the NHL Entry Draft last month, was named the Western Hockey League’s Player of the Year for the 2013-14 season as a center for the Kootenay Ice.
“We are very excited to have Sam under contract,” said Sabres General Manager Tim Murray. “We look forward to watching him develop and become an important part of our organization in the future.”
Additionally, the Sabres agreed to a one-year deal with forward Jordan Samuels-Thomas. The two-way deal has an NHL rate of $640,000.
The Sabres acquired the rights to Samuels-Thomas Wednesday in a trade with the Winnipeg Jets. The team gave up a conditional seventh round pick in order to acquire the 24-year-old Quinnipiac University product.
Samuels-Thomas was originally drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers in the seventh round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft before the franchise moved to Winnipeg.
Both will be present for Sabres Development Camp, which opens Monday morning in First Niagara Center.
Samuels-Thomas has tweeted the following messages about his signing:
Excited to be signed on with the @BuffaloSabres next season. Prayers habe been answered! I look forward to being a part this new culture...— Jordan SamuelsThomas (@SamuelsThomas19) July 12, 2014
I will give everything I have to this organization that has blessed me with this great opportunity. Thanks to all who have reached out...— Jordan SamuelsThomas (@SamuelsThomas19) July 12, 2014