Jamie McGinn was considered by many as a throw in to the Ryan O'Reilly trade. He had a career high of 19 goals and 38 points. McGinn had only done that once, as his next best season was 12 goals and 24 points. This year, he already has 10 goals and 21 points in just 47 games. McGinn is on pace to come right around his career bests. He has also gave the Sabres a physical presence, as well as a good guy to have in front of the net on the power play. His game allows a coach to put him on any line, and he'll contribute.
McGinn is coming off a 2 year, $5.9 million deal that he originally signed with the Colorado Avalanche. That is a fair annual amount for him. McGinn is a $3 million player. However, will McGinn want a raise?
If I were Jamie McGinn, I would think I'm going to get a richer contract then he had before. Whether he hits the open market or not, I would guess he'll get somewhere between $3.5 million and $4 million a year. The term is also a question. McGinn will certainly want 3 or 4 years. I would anticipate Tim Murray would want to keep it down to 2 years, if he even has interest in resigning McGinn at all.
That's what the big question is right now. Is McGinn more valuable as a trade asset at the deadline or as a member of the Sabres for the future? If the Sabres were able to squeeze a late 1st round pick out of him, or a 2nd round pick and a B level prospect, then I would trade him. And no the Sabres will unlikely sign him on July 1st if that happens. Matt Moulson and Cody McCormick were anomalies. I would not bet on the Sabres being able to get more then a 2nd round pick for him.
Many fans feel that Tim Murray should resign McGinn, and even some Sabres' players agree.
So it will likely come down to, a 2nd round pick that you would hope becomes as good as McGinn is in 4 or 5 years. The other choice is negotiate with McGinn, know what you are getting from him, and helping your team in the short term. He has chemistry with Ryan O'Reilly, and he has an added spirit on the team. Most times when players are shown screwing around or having fun, McGinn seems to be at the forefront. He's the one messing with rookies after wins on the ice, he's the one riding with Evander Kane in a helicopter to the Blue Jays playoff game, and he's the one cracking jokes in locker room interviews.
Although we haven't seen him drop the gloves, McGinn is also a player who sticks up for this teammates, while still being a good hockey player. That role is nice to have in a guy that can play any line, instead of a guy who can only play 5 to 10 minutes a night.
I would sign McGinn if I were Tim Murray. He's a veteran, but he's still only 27 years old. What if McGinn is just a more physical Jochen Hecht? That's the type of player the Sabres would want. Look at a team like Pittsburgh, they'd kill to have a role player like Jamie McGinn right now, considering former Sabre Kevin Porter has been playing for them. Yes that Kevin Porter.