BUFFALO – Winger Kyle Okposo still remembers the first time he and some other Sabres watched rookie Victor Olofsson shoot the puck.
It was training camp in 2018, and Olofsson had just arrived for his first North American season after leading the Swedish Hockey League in goals.
What Okposo and the others saw wowed them.
“We were just like, ‘Who is this kid who can shoot the puck like this?’” Okposo said Thursday inside KeyBank ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Officially, center Marcus Johansson’s winner 1:30 into overtime Wednesday doesn’t count as the Sabres’ ninth power-play goal this season.
Johansson secured the Sabres’ third win in four tries (3-0-1), an exciting 5-4 triumph over the Montreal Canadiens, five seconds after center Phillip Danault’s slashing penalty expired.
So, yes, on paper, Johansson’s one-timer from the right circle goes down as an even-strength score. But Danault hadn’t even gotten back into the play yet.
Make ... Read the full article
PITTSBURGH – Throughout training camp, coach Ralph Krueger insisted his Sabres had embraced the new ideas he and his coaching staff brought to Buffalo.
Krueger wants the Sabres to play fast, stay connected and utilize their instincts. It might take sacrificing a little offense, but in the end, he believes they can reap rewards from the aggressive new approach.
Based on Thursday’s 3-1, season-opening win against the Penguins, Krueger’s message is getting through to the ... Read the full article
PITTSBURGH – In almost equal preseason action, Buffalo Sabres goalie Linus Ullmark outplayed Carter Hutton, posting a goals-against average 64 points lower and a save percentage 49 points higher than his partner.
But Hutton, 33, handled the load last season, playing a career-high 50 games.
Sabres coach Ralph Krueger, who said everything was up for competition during training camp, probably wants to show Hutton respect on opening night against the Penguins.
The veteran will ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – An upper-body injury will sideline Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe the rest of the preseason, the team announced this morning.
“It was in practice yesterday, just light upper body,” Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said inside KeyBank Center. “We’re expecting him to be good to go for the first league game.”
McCabe, 25, has battled shoulder problems in the past.
In addition to McCabe, four other Sabres defensemen – Zach Bogosian (hip), Matt Hunwick (neck), ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Counting 22 postseason appearances, forward Marcus Johansson played 32 games with the Bruins. The Swede arrived in Boston on Feb. 25 and was gone by July 6, when he signed a two-year, $9 million contract with the Sabres.
But Johansson’s short run with one of the NHL’s model franchises recharged his career.
After battling injuries, including two concussions, with the New Jersey Devils over a season and a half, Johansson played regularly throughout ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Before Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens’ impressive effort in Friday’s preseason loss, the coaching staff marked him down as a possibility to play again in tonight’s rematch against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
“There was a good chance he was going to play, but he confirmed it yesterday with what he showed us, and we need one more look here,” Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said this morning inside KeyBank Center.
Cozens, 18, was one ... Read the full article
TORONTO – In the offseason, Buffalo Sabres winger Tage Thompson started what he called a “full-time job.”
“I was eating a lot,” Thompson said prior to Friday’s 3-0 exhibition loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Yes, Thompson, 21, spent much of the spring and summer devouring food.
“I was probably eating five square meals a day with snacks in between,” Thompson said in Buffalo before the Sabres traveled to Scotiabank Arena.
Sound like fun? Well, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – The good news for the Sabres is defenseman Brandon Montour’s hand injury probably won’t sideline him too long.
While Montour will miss the rest of the preseason, Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said he should be ready “pretty soon” after the season opener Oct. 3.
The Sabres, who began training camp down three defensemen, could ill afford to lose another one, especially a point-producer capable of eating up minutes.
Then Montour, 25, left Tuesday’s ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Coach Ralph Krueger wants center Dylan Cozens to relax during tonight’s preseason opener. Throughout the recent Prospects Challenge rookie tournament, the Sabres’ top pick often tried to do to much.
“He was trying to be a different-maker every time on the ice,” Krueger said after the Sabres prepared for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The seventh overall pick knows he must calm down a little.
“I can’t be out there trying to dangle everyone and ... Read the full article