Ryan O'Reilly scored two goals Monday. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Ryan O’Reilly starting to produce

BUFFALO – Ryan O’Reilly’s ability to adapt to an evolving game has helped the talented center morph from an unheralded second-round pick into an NHL All-Star and the Sabres’ most versatile player.

“Every year you got to reinvent your game,” O’Reilly said Thursday. “What worked last year at certain times isn’t going to work this year at certain times. It’s finding a new way and finding different things. It’s on myself.”... Read the full article

Seth Griffith has been a scratch the last two games. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres return from road trip banged up

BUFFALO – Up top in the press box, with a view of the entire ice surface, hockey can look pretty simple.

“It’s obviously a lot easier watching games than it is being on the ice,” said Sabres winger Seth Griffith, a healthy scratch the last two games. “You see stuff that you wouldn’t normally see necessarily on the ice.”

Thanks to a glut of injuries, Griffith, the team’s biggest surprise during training camp, should ... Read the full article

Justin Bailey is 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Justin Bailey trying to evolve with Amerks

ROCHESTER – Even with a 6-foot-3, 210-pound frame, hitting can be difficult for Buffalo Sabres prospect Justin Bailey, a slick goal scorer trying develop more tools.

“It’s not as easy as people think, even as I think,” Bailey said Friday following the Rochester Americans’ 2-0 loss to the Utica Comets. “Hitting’s difficult to do.”

Bailey, 22, said he has learned thumping opponents – “Making sure that you’re not killing a guy from behind,” he ... Read the full article

Josh Gorges sat out the first three games. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres veteran Josh Gorges adjusting to new role, expectations

BUFFALO – The skill set that has buoyed Josh Gorges’ unlikely 13-year NHL career is pretty straightforward. The Sabres defenseman showcases grit and tenacity.

Gorges, 33, is a stay-at-home, defensive defenseman. He plays full throttle, rarely letting up.

His talents, of course, would be welcomed by any team. But the NHL has evolved in recent seasons, transforming into a speedy league.... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart played three games at center. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres move struggling Sam Reinhart

BUFFALO – Sam Reinhart’s run at center lasted three games.

Following two wretched losses in which opponents outscored the Sabres 12-5, coach Phil Housley, as expected, mixed up his lines and defense pairs Wednesday, making changes to every combination.

Most notably, Reinhart, who moved to his natural position in training camp, skated at right wing again, his spot most of the last two years. Housley also yanked from Reinhart off the power play. Reinhart has ... Read the full article

Zach Bogosian was injured late in the preseason. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres switch up lines; Zach Bogosian not traveling with team

BUFFALO – Following two wretched losses in which opponents outscored the Sabres 12-5, coach Phil Housley, as expected, mixed up his lines and defense pairs today, making changes to every combination.

“You change the lines to try to get the other guys going or maybe there’s some chemistry you’re looking for,” Housley said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “That’s why I made that change today. They could change tomorrow.”

The 0-2-1 Sabres face the ... Read the full article

Matt Moulson sat out the season opener. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Matt Moulson enjoying honesty, respect from Sabres coach Phil Housley

BUFFALO – In Phil Housley’s first weeks as Sabres coach, he has mostly spoken glowingly of his players, accompanying any mild criticism with praise.

However, behind closed doors, Housley, a Hall of Fame defenseman, can be blunt.... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly has just one assist this season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres implode against Devils, still looking for first win

BUFFALO – Phil Housley played eight seasons here, so the rookie coach understands Sabres fans, win or lose, appreciate a strong effort.

To Housley, the surly crowd “had a right” to boo the winless Sabres throughout Monday afternoon’s wretched 6-2 defeat to the New Jersey Devils.

“If I was sitting in their shoes, I would’ve had maybe the same reaction,” said Housley, who called his team’s effort “unacceptable.”... Read the full article

Nathan Beaulieu has committed some costly turnovers. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres newcomer Nathan Beaulieu struggling early

BUFFALO – By the 12-minute mark of the second period, with the New Jersey Devils throttling the Sabres and a huge gaffe fresh in his mind, defenseman Nathan Beaulieu figured he better do something notable.

So the struggling newcomer, whose turnover minutes earlier created New Jersey’s fourth goal, fought Miles Wood, winning a quick and easy decision.

“I was obviously frustrated with the way it was going and just trying to find a spark,” Beaulieu ... Read the full article

Chad Johnson relieved Robin Lehner on Saturday. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Chad Johnson to start against Devils

BUFFALO – Backup goalie Chad Johnson, who relieved Robin Lehner for the final 31 minutes of Saturday’s 6-3 road loss to the New York Islanders, will start this afternoon’s tilt against the New Jersey Devils.

“We looked at the schedule, we wanted to get him a game early, right away,” Housley said. “The plan was not to have Robin pulled so early in the second period. We felt Chad had a good outing.”

Johnson ... Read the full article