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Sabres stand pat, make no deadline trades

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Posted at 6:05 PM, Mar 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-01 18:05:04-05

At every Buffalo Sabres home game, there's a gentleman that yells "CLOCK'S TICKING MURRAY" in section 316. He does it every single game as a subtle reminder of the looming N.H.L. trade deadline.

Apparently, Murray didn't hear him because on Wednesday the clock ticked past the 3:00 p.m. deadline, and the Sabres stood pat, making no trades.

"It was the quietest (deadline) since I've been here," Murray told reporters on Wednesday afternoon. "I made some calls, made a lot of calls to set the table on trading away a couple guys and made a few calls on to see if I could make a hockey trade and yet younger."

Murray admitted that he was disappointed he couldn't swing a deal, but said today's inactivity is just a minor speed bump for the organization's plan.

The Sabres general manager specifically addressed Dmitry Kulikov, Brian Gionta and Cody Franson (all pending UFA's) and said that he took calls on all of them, but couldn't find a fair offer.

"I took every call on everybody, that's what I'm here to do" Murray added when asked specifically about trading away Brian Gionta. "

Murray said that when he received interest for Gionta he talked with the Sabres captain and decided to keep him in Buffalo.

Here are some of the other topics Murray addressed:

Dmitry Kulikov

According to Murray, injuries were a big concern for the teams that reached out, which was one of the reasons the team couldn't get a deal done.

Evander Kane

Murray said that a few teams called about Kane, but the offers weren't anything to consider. When asked about Kane's long-term future Murray said:

"On the ice this year he has played very well. I think next year going into his contract year he's going to be highly motivated. I think most games he's highly motivated when he steps on the ice. I've said this 100 times, I like when he gets on the ice I like his game.  You know, if he has the start to his year next year that he had this year without the injury I'm sure that there will be a ton of interest in his services and I'm sure we'll have an interest in talking contract moving forward. So, that's to be determined at a later date, but his play will dictate both of those scenarios."

Murray was then asked if he would extend Kane's contract in the offseason.

"In a scenario where he has a couple of things going on off the ice go away, and stuff like that, absolutely.

Dan Bylsma

When asked about a lackluster return from the bye week Murray said he puts the blame on everybody but said the players on the ice need to perform better. 

Expansion draft

With the expansion draft looming, Murray said he thinks held back on some potential deals out of fear that they wouldn't be able to protect players in the summer. Murray added it was absolutely a factor. 

The last time the Sabres didn't make a move at the deadline? 2002. Crazy.