Nick Baptiste (13) skates away from his teammates after celebrating his game-winning goal Saturday afternoon. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Nick Baptiste stars in rare Sabres win over Blackhawks

BUFFALO – On a Sabres team filled with, well, not exactly the fastest players, winger Nick Baptiste’s speed stands out.

Slick skating has helped the 6-foot-1, 205-pound Baptiste finally earn regular NHL action three years into his pro career. But the former third-round pick has played 12 straight games because he has evolved and started figuring what can make him successful.... Read the full article

Nathan Beaulieu has four fights this season. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Nathan Beaulieu ‘big believer in fighting’

BUFFALO – In his NHL career, Sabres defenseman Nathan Beaulieu has fought 12 times, or an average of once every 23 games.

Speed and other skills, of course, helped Beaulieu reach the big leagues. Still, he believes fighting is a vital part of his repertoire.

“I’m a big believer in fighting in hockey,” Beaulieu said prior to recording an assist in Saturday afternoon’s 5-3 win against the Chicago Blackhawks. “I feel like there’s a place ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel missed 15 games. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jack Eichel set to return from ankle injury

BUFFALO – Sabres center Jack Eichel, out the last 15 games with a high-right ankle sprain, will return for this afternoon’s tilt against the Chicago Blackhawks.

“Talking to our doctors and trainers, his practice, the way he progressed all week, we checked all the boxes off,” Sabres coach Phil Housley said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “He’s ready to play, he wants to play, he wants to get back in the lineup. We feel ... Read the full article

Kyle Okposo also suffered a concussion last season. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Kyle Okposo practices, feeling healthy after concussion

BUFFALO – When Sabres winger Kyle Okposo suffered his second concussion in less than a year, his mind raced back to his frightening experience last season.

Last March, a concussion forced Okposo, 29, to be hospitalized in intensive care. So following his collision with Senators winger Bobby Ryan last week in Ottawa, he thought the worst.

“That kind of runs through your mind, ‘Oh no, I hope it doesn’t happen again,’ and, ‘Here we ... Read the full article

The Sabres recalled Linus Ullmark on Tuesday. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Linus Ullmark back with Sabres after birth of son

BUFFALO – About 10 days before Linus Ullmark’s wife, Moa, gave birth to a baby boy, the goalie started giving a physical therapist in Rochester his phone during practices in case she went into labor.

After the Sabres recalled Ullmark from the Americans on Tuesday, he let Michael Adesso, the Buffalo’s assistant athletic trainer and physical therapist, hold his phone when he was on the ice.

Early during Wednesday’s session inside HarborCenter, the loquacious Ullmark... Read the full article

Nathan Beaulieu (right) fights Toronto's Matt Martin on Thursday. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres start slowly, fall to Maple Leafs

BUFFALO – Defenseman Nathan Beaulieu’s decision to challenge one of the NHL’s toughest customers had the desired effect for the reeling Sabres.

With the Sabres down 2-0 just minutes into Thursday’s 5-2 loss, Beaulieu picked a fight with Toronto Maple Leafs heavyweight Matt Martin.

“Sometimes it’s just something you need to do,” Beaulieu said. “A lot of respect over there to give me that opportunity. He’s a tough customer. Just trying to wake the boys ... Read the full article

Evan Rodrigues missed five games. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Evan Rodrigues returns feeling confident

BUFFALO – Before Evan Rodrigues suffered an upper-body injury Feb. 28, the Sabres forward was playing perhaps the best hockey of his three-year career.

Less than a month after sitting out as a healthy scratch, he seemed to be putting everything together, showcasing speed, tenacity and the shot mentality Sabres coach Phil Housley constantly stresses.

In his last appearance prior to returning for Thursday’s 5-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Rodrigues scored and pumped ... Read the full article

Brendan Guhle will play his 10th NHL game tonight. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu, Olean Times Herald

Sabres rookie Brendan Guhle adjusting to NHL game

BUFFALO – When the Sabres faced the Toronto Maple Leafs here 10 days ago, defenseman Brendan Guhle started his first NHL game in seven weeks poorly.

“He had a little bit of a rough start in a big game, in a big atmosphere,” Sabres coach Phil Housley said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “But as the game wore on, I thought he got more comfortable. I think he’s getting more comfortable as he’s playing his ... Read the full article

Robin Lehner makes a save on Vegas' Tomas Hyka on Saturday afternoon. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

With goalie Linus Ullmark up, Sabres have crowded net

BUFFALO – Before a rough outing last week, Sabres backup Chad Johnson was among the NHL’s hottest goalies, going 6-2-0 over a six-week stretch.

But Johnson, 31, might be getting a break soon. In fact, in the near future, he could even be scratched for some games.

Right now, the Sabres have three healthy goalies – Johnson, starter Robin Lehner and prospect Linus Ullmark – on the roster.

The Sabres recalled Ullmark, 24, their ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel pursues Detroit's Niklas Kronwall on Oct. 24. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jack Eichel out Thursday; Kyle Okposo doing well

BUFFALO – Sabres center Jack Eichel won’t be ready for Thursday’s home tilt against the Toronto Maple Leafs and will miss his 15th straight game.

Still, Eichel, who returned to practice Tuesday, has been progressing in his recovery from a high right ankle sprain. The Sabres just don’t want to rush the youngster.

“He felt really good today,” Housley said this afternoon inside KeyBank Center. “It’s one of those things we’re trying to ease ... Read the full article