The waiting is over – the Buffalo Beauts have signed the first player to their 2019-20 roster. On the same day that the Beauts announced their new head coach, word was released that they had also brought back one of the greatest leaders in the team’s history. Original NWHLer Corinne Buie re-signed for what will be her fourth season in Buffalo and fifth in the league.
“I am so proud to have Corinne back for her fourth season in Buffalo,” said general manager Mandy Cronin in the release on Buie’s re-signing. “She has been an integral part of the organization, and we are thrilled to have her wearing Beauts’ blue again.”
Buie is the only player in NWHL history to have played in every Isobel Cup Final game since the inception of the league. She won the trophy with the Boston Pride during the NWHL’s inaugural 2015-16 season, and followed that up by helping the Beauts win the trophy for 2016-17.
Afterward, Buie stayed integral in getting the Beauts back to the title game in 2018 and 2019 as well. That is not even mentioning the fact that Buie won a CWHL Clarkson Cup with the former Boston Blades in her rookie professional-level season of 2014-15. She is riding a streak of six straight shots at a championship.
Buffalo’s Best All-Around Player
There is no aspect that is lacking to Corinne Buie’s game.
The 27-year-old forward has great size and strength at 5-foot-9 and near the 160-pound mark. While she is lean in appearance, she is incredibly strong in corners and when puck-battling. Though soft spoken off of the ice, Buie plays a robust game and can fulfill a role as a checking-line player.
Saying that, she also possesses the offensive skills to be a first-line player if called upon to do. In 66 career regular season NWHL games, Buie has scored 19 goals and 17 assists for 36 points. She reached double digits in points for both the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons.
Then there are Buie’s leadership skills. She served as the Beauts’ team captain outright for the 2017-18 season. Buie followed that up by splitting the captaincy with Emily Pfalzer and Hayley Scamurra this past 2018-19 season, with each player donning an “A”.
Lastly, we must point out Buie’s strengths in situational play. During her time with Buffalo, the coaching staff was always able to rely on her as a bit of a workhorse. Power play, penalty kill extra attacker – Buie was utilized in every imaginable position.
Across her 66 career games, she has compiled eight power play goals, two game-winners and has blocked a total of 38 shots. Most memorably, it was Buie who scored Buffalo’s game-tying goal in their first ever home playoff game – a 3-2 overtime victory over Boston on Mar. 17, 2018.
Buie Is What Buffalo Needs
There was a great deal of speculation and doubt over what Beauts – if any – would return to the team from the 2018-19 season. Thankfully for Buffalo fans, at least one player has.
Buie is the perfect first signing for GM Cronin’s tenure in Buffalo. Buie is widely respected throughout women’s hockey both for her play on the ice and her character.
“Buffalo has become like a second home to me, and I am very excited to continue my career as a Beaut,” she said in the release about her signing.
Given Buie’s penchant for winning and playing in big games, she has developed a certain calmness that tends to permeate throughout the Beauts locker room. It would not be surprising if Buie is elected team captain again for 2019-20.
In previous seasons, whenever the Beauts encountered a frustrating situation or suffered a roadblock of sorts, it was Buie that imbued a steadiness that traveled through the team rather contagiously. Every hockey club needs a player who is the glue for her team, and Buie fills that position for the Beauts. She is the kind of player that teammates gain confidence from simply her being on the bench with them.
Buie is just the start of how the Beauts roster will ultimately shape out. THW will keep you posted as each signing takes place and update the roster accordingly. As of Jun. 14, here is how the Beauts currently look:
Forward: Corinne Buie.
Beginning May 15, NWHL teams can re-sign players from their 2018-19 roster and their draft picks. Additionally, for those players who have completed their college eligibility and want to continue their hockey careers, NWHL Free Agency provides the best opportunity to continue playing at the highest level of professional women’s hockey. The fifth season of the NWHL will begin in October as the Minnesota Whitecaps look to defend their Isobel Cup championship.
My colleague Dan Rice will keep THW readers up-to-date on Metropolitan and Connecticut’s signings throughout the summer, while I post updates on Buffalo and Boston. Together we will be keeping readers informed of all of Minnesota’s signings.