Evander Kane meshed well in San Jose. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres will receive first-round pick from Sharks for Evander Kane

Suddenly, the Buffalo Sabres’ return for winger Evander Kane – remember, the trade looked pretty underwhelming three months ago – includes a first-round pick.

The San Jose Sharks officially re-signed Kane, who would’ve become an unrestricted free agent July 1, to a seven-year contract today worth $49 million, according to capfriendly.com. In keeping Kane, 26, the second-round pick in 2019 they dealt the Sabres on Feb. 26 becomes a first-rounder.... Read the full article

Rasmus Dahlin has the Sabres and their fans excited. ©2018, Hickling Images

Coveted prospect Rasmus Dahlin will make Sabres relevant again

TORONTO – With the bounce of a ball, the Buffalo Sabres, one of the NHL’s laughingstocks for years, suddenly became relevant again.

Years from now, winning Saturday’s NHL Draft Lottery could be remembered as a seminal moment in franchise history.

When the Sabres pick Rasmus Dahlin first overall June 22 in Dallas, they will possess arguably the best defense prospect in decades. The Swede has superstar potential. Even at 18 years old – if you ... Read the full article

Phil Housley needs a defenseman like Rasmus Dahlin. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres notes: Phil Housley likely has ace defenseman in Rasmus Dahlin

TORONTO – Over Phil Housley’s first season as coach, the Sabres rarely showcased the aggressive style the slick Hall of Fame defenseman wants to implement in Buffalo.

The NHL’s worst team didn’t possess the talent to play fast and move the puck from the blue line the way Nashville Predators did during Housley’s successful stint as an assistant coach.... Read the full article

Rasmus Dahlin will instantly improve the Sabres. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres win NHL Draft Lottery, right to select Rasmus Dahlin

TORONTO – Few expected this would happen. Sure, thanks to their last-place finish, the Buffalo Sabres owned the highest odds – just 18.5 percent – for the first overall pick in Saturday’ NHL Draft Lottery.

But Buffalo teams don’t have any luck, right? The Sabres also had the best odds in 2014 and 2015 and lost the lottery both times.

Then at 10:14 p.m. Saturday inside the CBC building, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly revealed ... Read the full article

The Sabres might get an opportunity to draft Brady Tkachuk. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Odds are Sabres won’t get top pick in NHL Draft Lottery

TORONTO – If the Sabres lose tonight’s NHL Draft Lottery – given they have just an 18.5 percent chance at the No. 1 pick, defenseman Rasmus Dahlin likely won’t be coming to Buffalo – the consolation prize won’t be a talent as special as center Jack Eichel.

Three years ago, after a season of not-so-subtle tanking garnered the Sabres the highest odds at the top selection, they dropped to second in the lottery.... Read the full article

Rasmus Ristolainen always plays big minutes. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Rasmus Ristolainen only knows losing at NHL level

BUFFALO – Rasmus Ristolainen normally offers little insight. Whether the defenseman’s talking about himself or the Sabres, his answers are short and, well, pretty bland.

But after the Sabres completed another miserable season earlier this month, Ristolainen, 23, opened up a bit and talked about how the constant losing he has experienced has taken its toll on him.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel spoke like a leader last week. ©2018, Hickling Images

Youngster Jack Eichel could be Sabres’ captain next season

BUFFALO – When the Sabres chose to rotate four alternates this season instead of awarding the prestigious ‘C’ to a single player, they likely started center Jack Eichel’s ascension to the captaincy.

The Sabres, of course, couldn’t name Eichel their captain last October. He was entering just his third NHL season and still prone to bouts of immaturity. He had never worn a letter, either.

So they let him sport an ‘A’ with veterans Zach ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville (29) has experienced raucous crowds in Buffalo. ©2018, Hickling Images

Winning will help Sabres generate more excitement at home

BUFFALO – KeyBank Center hasn’t always been the NHL’s quietest venue. When the Sabres roared out of the 2005 lockout and briefly contended for the Stanley Cup during winger Jason Pominville’s first tenure here, the rink was often raucous and among the league’s noisiest.

Of course, 10 or 12 years ago, the Sabres regularly won games and ranked among the league’s highest-scoring teams. If you attended a game, chances are you’d witness something special ... Read the full article

Jason Botterill has a long list of things the Sabres must change. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres GM Jason Botterill ticked off over poor season

BUFFALO – Sabres general manager Jason Botterill spoke like a man embarrassed by what he had just experienced and hellbent on never letting it happening again.

Botterill is usually measured in his comments, keeping his emotions in check. But discussing the Sabres’ wretched 31st-place finish this season made him seethe.

The Sabres hired Botterill last year from Pittsburgh, where he won three Stanley Cups in 10 seasons with the Penguins and never missed the playoffs.... Read the full article

Phil Housley won 25 games as a rookie coach. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres notes: GM Jason Botterill supports coach Phil Housley

BUFFALO – It’s unlikely legendary coaches Toe Blake or Scotty Bowman could’ve done much with the Sabres this season. A dearth of talent helped them finish 31st overall.

Still, following such a miserable campaign, the question had to be asked: will Phil Housley be general manager Jason Botterill’s coach again next season?

“One-hundred percent Phil Housley will be our coach next year,” Botterill said Wednesday inside KeyBank Center. “I have certainly enjoyed working with Phil ... Read the full article