Trevor Kuntar played three seasons in Youngstown. ©2020, Scott Galvin, Youngstown Phantoms

Bruins draft Williamsville’s Trevor Kuntar 89th overall

When 31 teams passed over Trevor Kuntar in the NHL Draft last year, he said he never stopped thinking about it. The snubs fueled the Williamsville native.

Kuntar, 19, tried to seize the opportunity having an extra year to develop into a better prospect offered him.

“I’m kind of glad that it happened like that, too, because I feel like I’m in a pretty good spot,” Kuntar told the Times Herald last week.

This afternoon, ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner could be sidelined around a month. ©2019, Hickling Images

With Jeff Skinner injured, Sabres revamp lines to generate offense

BUFFALO – Forget that Jeff Skinner hadn’t scored in 11 games before suffering an upper-body injury Friday. Forget that after enjoying his first 40-goal campaign, the Sabres winger has only produced 11 goals in 39 contests this season.

Skinner, who will be sidelined three to four weeks, the Sabres announced Saturday, can be a lethal scorer. In his last few outings, he channeled his 2018-19 form, showcasing the tenacious style that helped make him ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner has endured a rough month. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres lose game to Bruins, Jeff Skinner to upper-body injury

BUFFALO – The Sabres have a way of making any recent progress quickly feel like a distant memory.

For the first two weeks of December, they channeled some of their early-season form, shaking off an awful November swoon and moving back into a playoff spot in the Atlantic Division.

Now, having dropped five of their last six games (1-4-1), they’re struggling again.

To make matters worse, in addition to losing 3-0 to the heavyweight Boston ... Read the full article

Jake McCabe captained Team USA at the 2013 World Junior Championship. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Jake McCabe’s advice to Mattias Samuelsson: ‘Be yourself’

BUFFALO – Seven years ago, Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe had no idea he would be named captain of Team USA’s entry at the World Junior Championship.

The team, after all, had some returning players. McCabe, then 19, was participating in his first tournament.

“It was one I was surprised about because I was a first-year player,” McCabe said prior to Friday’s 3-0 loss to the Boston Bruins at KeyBank Center. “But I took it with ... Read the full article

Curtis Lazar has played 18 games with the Amerks this season. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres recall Curtis Lazar from Amerks again, reason unclear

BUFFALO – The Sabres recalled forward Curtis Lazar from the Rochester Americans this afternoon for fourth time this season.

Lazar’s arrival could mean center Johan Larsson, out the last two games with an upper-body bruise, isn’t ready to play tonight against the Boston Bruins. Larsson skated this morning inside KeyBank Center.

It could also mean the Sabres want an extra forward. Lazar gives them 13 on the roster.... Read the full article

Marco Scandella is sick. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Marco Scandella out, lineup for Bruins to be announced later

BUFFALO – Fresh off a three-day Christmas break, the Sabres will change their lineup tonight against the Boston Bruins.

Illness will sideline defenseman Marco Scandella, Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said.

Something has been spreading through the locker room. Krueger said Scandella called Thursday night and he he was sick.

“Hopefully he’s the last one,” Krueger said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “It kind was kind of going through. There were six, seven guys that felt ... Read the full article

Kyle Okposo has enjoyed a strong season. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

After years of scoring, Sabres’ Kyle Okposo thriving in new checking role

BUFFALO – It’s pretty easy to tell when Kyle Okposo’s thriving. At his best, the Sabres winger is in the thick of the action, bumping bodies and aggressively pursuing and moving the puck.

“I love the grind,” said Okposo, whose Sabres host the Boston Bruins tonight at KeyBank Center following a three-day Christmas break. “I love just being hard on pucks down low, taking pucks to the net, fighting for every inch, hunting pucks down, ... Read the full article

Jimmy Vesey has mustered zero goals and two assists this season. ©2019, Hickling Images

Reeling Sabres’ reshuffling lands Jimmy Vesey spot on top line

BUFFALO – When the Sabres acquired Jimmy Vesey in the summer, it seemed like he could earn an opportunity to play with top center Jack Eichel.

Of course, no one thought that chance would materialize after scoring zero goals in his first 18 outings. But right now, Vesey is the reeling Sabres’ No. 1 left winger.

“Getting put up there kind of gives you a shot in the arm and a little bit of a ... Read the full article

Tage Thompson experienced a big growth spurt in 2015. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Tage Thompson learning to utilize big body

BUFFALO – Not long before Sabres winger Tage Thompson began his freshman year at UConn, he was 6-foot-1 and 160 pounds.

Then Thompson experienced a growth spurt over the summer of 2015. By the time he got to campus, he was a lanky 6-foot-4 and 180 pounds.

“So three inches and 20 pounds over the course of a summer,” Thompson said Friday inside KeyBank Center. “Then that following year, (I) grew another inch, put on ... Read the full article

Goalie Carter Hutton eyes the puck Saturday. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres blow late lead, fall to Bruins in overtime

BUFFALO – By about halfway through the third period of Saturday’s 3-2 overtime loss, which inched the Boston Bruins within two points of the third-place Sabres, it appeared officials would let just about anything go.

At one point, 6-foot-9 defenseman Zdeno Chara wasn’t penalized for tackling 5-foot-8 Sabres winger Conor Sheary.

So when defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen went off for kneeing with the Sabres clinging to a 2-1 lead in the waning minutes, the capacity crowd ... Read the full article