BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) With his nose broken, Buffalo Sabres forward Drew Stafford found a sliver of positive perspective in summing up one of the worst and most tumultuous seasons in the franchise's 44-year history.

As bad as the team was, Stafford suggested, ''We can only go up from here,'' after cleaning out his locker Monday.

Things can't get much worse following a season during which Buffalo set numerous lows.

En route to a 21-51-10 last-place finish, the Sabres opened the season getting off to a 2-13-1 start, and then closed it with a 2-16-2 slump.

Very little went right in between.

The GM and coach were fired. What was left of the team's veteran core was traded. And a lengthy series of injuries left the Sabres with a patchwork roster.