Sabres center Evan Rodrigues skates between Colorado's J.T. Compher (37) and Semyon Varlamov on Thursday. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres implode early, get blown out by Avalanche

BUFFALO – About 32 hours before the Sabres began Thursday’s ugly 6-1 loss, veteran winger Kyle Okposo saw some ominous signs of trouble during practice.

Throughout the short season, the Sabres had been dialed in and ready, according to Okposo. But fresh off two straight wins, he said they looked sloppy during Wednesday’s session.

“It was a lot like how we played the first period,” an agitated Okposo said after the Colorado Avalanche shellacked the ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt knows he must evolve. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres notes: Casey Mittelstadt focusing on defensive side

BUFFALO – Sabres center Casey Mittelstadt has produced goals and points at every level of hockey. So right now, 10 games into his NHL career, the rookie said he isn’t worried about his offense.

“I’m sure the offense will come, it usually does,” Mittelstadt said prior to Thursday’s 6-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche inside KeyBank Center. “I’m pretty good with that.”

Mittelstadt, 19, has been an offensive stud wherever he plays. Last season, he ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt has always been a scorer. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres rookie Casey Mittelstadt trying to evolve game

BUFFALO – Sabres center Casey Mittelstadt has produced goals and points at every level of hockey. So right now, nine games into his NHL career, the rookie said he isn’t worried about his offense.

“I’m sure the offense will come, it usually does,” Mittelstadt said this morning after the Sabres prepared for tonight’s tilt against the Colorado Avalanche inside KeyBank Center. “I’m pretty good with that.”

Mittelstadt, 19, has been an offensive stud wherever he ... Read the full article

A lower-body injury sidelined Johan Larsson. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Johan Larsson to make season debut, play wing

BUFFALO – In his brief time with the Sabres, center Casey Mittelstadt has never even practiced beside Johan Larsson, who will return from a lower-body injury tonight.

While the Sabres used the same lineup in two straight wins, coach Phil Housley wants to give Larsson, 26, a look. So the Swede, who usually plays center, will skate at left wing beside Mittelstadt and Tage Thompson tonight against the Colorado Avalanche inside KeyBank Center.

Larsson, ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has a stronger supporting cast this season. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ depth has buoyed strong start

BUFFALO – Depth means coach Phil Housley can utilize his so-called fourth line for critical defensive zone faceoffs. It means the Sabres can replace former center Ryan O’Reilly’s minutes by committee. It means it can often be hard to distinguish between the first and fourth trios.

Right now, for the first time in years, the 2-1 Sabres possess depth up front and the ability to roll four lines.

“We’ve been rolling them pretty good,” center ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly stepped up in Jack Eichel's absence. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres struggle in first game without Jack Eichel, lose to Avalache

BUFFALO – The Sabres can soften Jack Eichel’s loss, of course, if some of their other top players – think Ryan O’Reilly and Rasmus Ristolainen – step up and seize additional opportunities in his absence.

If they don’t, what could happen without Eichel, their most dynamic presence and leading scorer? They won only 16 of their first 55 games with Eichel, who’s sidelined indefinitely after suffering a high right ankle sprain Saturday.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has been the Sabres' MVP this season. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel’s absence will hurt Sabres

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s high right ankle sprain, an injury that will sideline the Sabres center indefinitely, hit the young star in the midst of a career-best stretch.

Eichel went on a tear beginning Dec. 1, morphing into one of the NHL’s most lethal scoring threats. His 15 goals and 34 points in 30 games since then both rank ninth overall.

The Sabres stand 30th in a 31-team league and have scored the second-fewest goals. ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has a team-high 53 points. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Injury hits Sabres’ Jack Eichel during career-best stretch

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s high right ankle sprain, an injury that will sideline the Sabres center indefinitely, hit the young star in the midst of a career-best stretch.

Since early December, Eichel had been on a tear, morphing into one of the NHL’s most lethal scoring threats.

The Sabres rank 30th in a 31-team league and have scored the second-fewest goals. They could ill afford to lose their only NHL All-Star.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel suffered a high left ankle sprain last season. ©2018, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jack Eichel out indefinitely with high ankle sprain

BUFFALO – Sabres center Jack Eichel is out indefinitely after suffering a high right ankle sprain early in Saturday’s 4-2 win in Boston, the team announced this afternoon.

Only eight weeks are left in another miserable Sabres campaign, so Eichel’s season could be over.

The injury, of course, is familiar to Eichel. When the Sabres’ only NHL All-Star suffered a high left ankle sprain on the eve of the 2016-17 season opener, he missed the ... Read the full article

Matt Moulon (26) fights off Boston's Anton Blihd last season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Matt Moulson clears waivers, sent to Ontario Reign

BUFFALO – As expected, winger Matt Moulson cleared waivers today, meaning the Sabres will likely send him to the Rochester Americans.

The NHL’s worst team waived the graying Moulson, 34, on Monday. The veteran compiled zero points and a minus-9 rating in 14 appearances this season.

Moulson hasn’t played in the AHL since 2008-09. He’s in the fourth season of a five-year, $25 million contract.... Read the full article