The optimism has never been higher for the Buffalo Sabres in the last decade and that even goes back to 2015 when the team drafted Jack Eichel second overall.

The Sabres now have arguably, the best collection of prospects in the NHL.

Jack Quinn, JJ Peterka, Mattias Samuelsson, Peyton Krebs, Owen Power, Ryan Johnson, Matthew Savoie, Noah Ostlund, Jiri Kulich, Olivier Nadeau, Aleksandr Kisakov, and Isak Rosen are some of the notable players who will factor into the future for the franchise. That doesn't even count goaltenders Devon Levi and Erik Portillo, who were very impressive at development camp last week.

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It's been so long since the Sabres were at the top of fans' minds, even more than the Bills. The last time that was happening was during the 2006-2007 season and playoff run.

While most of those players are retired, one former Sabres defenseman who was just beginning his NHL career has announced his retirement from professional hockey.

Andrej Sekera has announced his retirement from professional hockey after 16 seasons.

Sekera spent the last few years of his career with the Dallas Stars and spent time with the Carolina Hurricanes and Edmonton Oilers.

Sekera was taken 71st overall in the 2004 NHL Draft and spent the first six years of his NHL career with the Sabres.

He played two regular season games for Buffalo during the 2006-2007 season and is the last player from that team to still be active in the NHL to retire. Jiri Novotny, who was traded away in 2007 is the last player to still be active in professional hockey, as he has played overseas for the last several years.

Sekera became a regular defenseman for the Sabres by 2007-2008.

Sekera was a smooth-skating defenseman who was a great puck handler. Congrats to Andrej for a long NHL career.

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