ROCHESTER – It took four years for this opportunity to materialize. During his first stint in the Buffalo Sabres organization, the Americans utilized Sean Malone as a checker, often giving him short minutes as their third- or fourth-line center.
Malone, 26, scored with some consistency despite playing down the lineup, hitting the 12-goal mark twice. Still, the West Seneca native craved a larger role.
“I’ve always wanted to show my offensive side,” Malone said after ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – For one season, Sean Malone enjoyed having a fresh set of eyes examine him. The Sabres center impressed the Nashville Predators so much he earned a stint on their taxi squad and a one-game promotion to the active roster.
In just his second NHL outing and first in nearly four years, Malone recorded his first point Feb. 9, an assist.
Mostly, however, Malone toiled in the minors, playing 23 games for the Chicago ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Brett Murray’s transformation into one of the Sabres’ best forward prospects spans three regimes over more than five years.
Ex-Sabres general manager Tim Murray (no relation) drafted him way back in 2016. He did not receive an entry-level NHL contract right away – the Sabres had concerns about his conditioning – so he began his pro career in 2019 by settling for an AHL deal.
But over the past two years, the 6-foot-5, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen’s first eight seasons, the Sabres morphed into the NHL’s laughingstock, finishing dead last four times and winning barely one-third of their games.
The constant losing and turmoil – Ristolainen played for a whopping six coaches and four general mangers, stunning numbers that illustrate the Sabres’ futility – wore on him. The straight-shooting Finn often voiced his frustration.
On Friday afternoon, hours before the Sabres picked Michigan defenseman Owen Power... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Just after 8 tonight, the Sabres will add a potentially franchise-changing talent in defenseman Owen Power, winger William Eklund or one of the other special NHL Draft prospects available to be picked first overall.
But right now, the draft, a virtual event that starts with the first round tonight, almost feels secondary. The Sabres have hit a critical juncture during an offseason in which they could trade captain Jack Eichel, their ... Read the full article
Since the Buffalo Sabres drafted Will Borgen 92nd overall in 2015, he has morphed from a relatively unknown prospect into a defenseman on the cusp of regular NHL duty.
The Sabres have guided Borgen’s development from his college career at St. Cloud State through his early pro days with the Rochester Americans to the big leagues.
Prior to breaking his forearm last season, Borgen, 24, appeared to be close to securing a spot on Buffalo’s ... Read the full article
Buffalo Sabres winger Jeff Skinner has waived his no-movement clause for the upcoming NHL Expansion Draft, his agent, Don Meehan, confirmed to the Times Herald on Wednesday.
Skinner’s decision is significant. The Sabres can use his spot to protect a young forward – perhaps Rasmus Asplund, Anders Bjork or Tage Thompson – who could’ve been exposed to the Seattle Kraken next Wednesday.
Skinner, 29, has struggled since signing an eight-year, $72 million contract ... Read the full article
The Buffalo Sabres did not give 2017 second-round pick Marcus Davidsson an entry-level contract by today’s 5 p.m. deadline, making the center a free agent.
The Sabres selected Davidsson 37th overall in ex-general manager Jason Botterill’s first draft, 17 picks before they took goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, who played his first four NHL games in April.
Davidsson is the only player from the Sabres’ 2017 draft class they did not sign. Their other selections ... Read the full article
During Jason Karmanos’ tenure with the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Buffalo Sabres’ new associate general manager said he was “intimately involved” in the NHL Draft.
So Karmanos arrived in Buffalo last month with strong knowledge of the Sabres’ prospect base.
“I’m excited they’re here, because these are guys that I liked on my own and that our previous staff liked,” Karmanos said on a Zoom call Monday.
Karmanos, who was fired as Pittsburgh’s assistant GM on ... Read the full article
Right now, Don Granato must wait as Kevyn Adams conducts what could be an exhaustive search for the Buffalo Sabres’ next head coach.
The general manager reiterated last week he plans to talk to a lot of people, so it might take several weeks before he makes the most critical decision of his short tenure.
If Adams gets it wrong, it will likely set the franchise back years.
Granato’s work transforming the Sabres as interim ... Read the full article