'The 27-year-old Hecht registered a career-high 52 points last season, despite playing in just 64 games due to a pre-season injury. The 27-year-old German broke his left arm in an exhibition game against Columbus, but returned to record 15 goals and 37 assists with an impressive plus-minus rating of +17.'
'The deal represents an $800,000 raise from last year and includes a $50,000 bonus if he matches last season's career-high 52 points. An arbitration hearing had been set for Sunday.'
'"Jochen was a strong contributor to our team on the ice and in the locker room last season," Sabres general manager Darcy Regier said. "Statistically, he has proven that he is one of our top forwards and is part of the leadership core of players in our organization."'
'Biron's agent Gilles Lupien told The Associated Press Thursday that he believes his client deserves a $2.7 million to $3 million contract, comparable to what other goalies of Biron's caliber and experience have received.'
'Goalie Martin Biron is scheduled to plead his case Friday. Top two-way forward Jochen Hecht is on the docket for Sunday, third-leading scorer J.P. Dumont for Monday, top scorer Daniel Briere for Wednesday and defenseman Brad Brown for next Thursday. Teams can negotiate contracts with their players up until their respective hearings.'
'Consequently, management's mandate this summer is to keep the team's young nucleus together, hoping that the additional maturity level of its roster will be enough to propel the team into a playoff position in the upcoming season. As a result, Buffalo GM Darcy Regier will likely spend the summer getting his in-house affairs in order, rather in becoming a big player in the free-agent market.'
'The team also had five players – forwards Norm Milley and Andrew Peters, defensemen Doug Janik and Dmitri Kalinin, and goalie Ryan Miller – fail to accept their qualifying offers by Saturday's deadline. While the Sabres retain the players' rights, the team must negotiate new contracts with them.'
'"I've been looking forward to this day for a long time," Andreychuk said. "Obviously, I was hoping it would be with the Sabres. I call Buffalo home. I have a ton of family and friends. I've been here for more than half my life. I'm happy to bring the Cup back. The way people have treated me since I've been here has just been awesome."'