Their rivalry is separated by a border and a highway. Fans of both teams show up at away games so easily that they can change the feel of the atmosphere for one another’s home games.
But when it comes to trading, there hasn’t been much action between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Buffalo Sabres. In fact, if you want to look back at the past five transactions between the two clubs, you’ll have to go all the way back to 1970. Lucky for you, that’s exactly what we’re going to do.
A Leaf No Moore
The most recent trade between the Leafs and Sabres happened almost nine years ago – on Mar. 4, 2009. Dominic Moore was on his first stint with the Leafs and the Sabres were looking to add an extra veteran.
Moore had 41 points in 63 games with the Leafs in 2008-09 when the team decided to trade the then 28-year-old to the Sabres for a second-round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. The Leafs ended up using the pick to take Jesse Blacker with the 58th overall selection.
While Blacker never played a game for the Leafs, he would see one game of NHL action for the Anaheim Ducks in 2014-15. Now, he finds himself playing for the Kunlun Red Star of the KHL.
Changing of the Guard
Before 2009, however, you have to go all the way back to 1993 for the second most recent trade between these two clubs. It was Feb. 2, 1993. The Leafs were set to move goaltender Grant Fuhr, but it was going to take quite a bit in return. Well, the Sabres had what they were looking for.
The Leafs would go on to trade Fuhr – after a rough 95 games with the team – along with a 1995 fifth-round pick to the Sabres in exchange for forward Dave Andreychuk, goaltender Daren Puppa and a first-round pick in the 1993 draft.
Fuhr played just parts of three seasons with the Sabres, tallying a 25-29-5 record. He notched a 3.60 goals against average and a .886 save percentage to go along with it. As for the pick, the Sabres used it to pick Kevin Popp with the 119th overall pick in 1995. Popp never cracked the NHL.
The Leafs on the other hand landed quite a haul. Andreychuk, while only playing parts of four seasons with the Leafs, tallied 219 points in 223 regular season games. He was also a force for them come playoff time. On top of that, Puppa played just eight games for the Leafs but accumulated a 6-2-0 record over that span. He finished with a .922 SV% and a 2.25 GAA in those eight games before leaving for Tampa Bay.
Finally, the Leafs used the first overall pick to take defenceman Kenny Jonsson with the 12th overall pick. He played parts of just two season for the Leafs accumulating 35 points in 89 regular season games before he was shipped off to the New York Islanders.
Hannan, A Minor Deal
Now, jump back another year to Mar. 10, 1992, when the Leafs and Sabres engaged in another minor deal. The Leafs traded away winger Dave Hannan – who had tallied 53 points in 148 regular season games for Toronto – for a fifth-round pick in 1992.
Toronto used the pick to take forward Chris DeRuiter with the 106th overall pick, but he never cracked the NHL lineup.
Hannan, however, went on to played 249 games for the Sabres totalling 23 goals and 79 points over that span.
Acquiring the Elder Foligno
Before that, the Leafs and Sabres did business back on Dec. 17, 1990. That’s when the Leafs acquired Mike Foligno along with an eighth-round pick in 1991 and sent Brian Curran and Lou Franceschetti the other way.
Curran played just 20 games for the Sabres over a two-year span collecting just one assist, while Franceschetti tallied eight points in 36 games for Buffalo over two seasons.
On the other side, the Leafs got a little more out of Foligno. He played 129 regular season games for Toronto over four seasons with a total of 27 goals and 47 points to show for it. They also used the pick to take Tomas Kucharcik with the 167th overall selection, but he never saw an NHL roster.
Brent, Son of Punch
Finally, the fifth most recent trade came back on Aug. 31, 1970, when the Leafs traded Brent Imlach (yes, son of Punch Imlach) to the Sabres for cash.
Punch was the coach and general manager of the Sabres at the time, which explains why they acquired the rights to the younger Imlach, but he never saw time in the NHL with Buffalo. In fact, his only two games at the NHL level came back in 1965-66 with the Leafs.
Andrew is in his 8th year reporting for The Hockey Writers covering the Toronto Maple Leafs. He began his broadcasting with CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada team as well as being part of their coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. He’s the former play-by-play voice of the London Jr. Knights for Rogers TV and currently hosts the Sticks in the 6ix podcast. You can follow him on Twitter at @AndrewGForbes.