If there's one thing you have to do in a capped league, it's trade your overvalued entry-level contracts as soon as they come to RFA status. And after Chicago's Stanley Cup run, nobody could be more overvalued than Dustin Byfuglien. Buf's contributions at even-strength have been very middling the last two seasons, as he faced mediocre competition alongside average linemates and got a reasonable distribution of zone starts:
|Year||Season||Buf's O-Zone Start%||Team O-Zone Start%||Buf's Rank on Team||Corsi Rank|
But in the playoffs, Joel Quenneville used Byfuglien in a very specific offensive role, and all of a sudden he became an offensive superstar. Don't get me wrong - this was good coaching - but Buf is nowhere near as good a his numbers suggest. Chicago was wise to dump an expiring contract, and the haul - a #24 pick and a prospect - reflects a league-wide understanding that Buf is just not as good as he appeared to be over the last two months.