BUFFALO – A simple factor contributed to Carter Hutton quietly morphing into one of the NHL’s best goalies last season. Instead of relegating the veteran to backup duty again, the St. Louis Blues rewarded his splendid play, giving him extra action.
In his first five full NHL seasons, Hutton had always been labeled the No. 2 goalie. After averaging only 21 appearances over the previous three years, he played 32 games in 2017-18, stealing playing ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – With so many shiny prospects gathered together, development camp can make an NHL team’s future look brighter than the reality.
Optimism often runs rampant during the summer. When a first-round pick or two wows you up close, it’s easy to get a little more excited.
Right now, the enthusiasm for the Sabres is understandable.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After Matej Pekar hit Casey Mittelstadt in the head during Saturday’s three-on-three development camp tournament, the agitator sensed an opportunity.
“That’s my shot to kind of piss him off, get in his head and try to win the game for the team,” Pekar said after camp ended inside HarborCenter. “I guess it worked out.”
Pekar, the 94th overall pick a week ago, kept going after Mittelstadt, irking the Sabres’ top forward prospect. The ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Right away, Brandon Hickey’s former Boston University teammates reached out to him. Jack Eichel, Danny O’Regan and Evan Rodrigues all welcomed the defenseman to the Sabres with text messages.
Hickey, 22, already looks comfortable with the Sabres, who traded winger Hudson Fasching to the Arizona Coyotes for the former third-round pick and forward Mike Sislo on June 14.
“There’s some familiar faces within the locker room there,” Hickey said Thursday. “When I ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Sabres prospect Victor Olofsson had never heard of hockey’s biggest defense prospect until two seasons ago, when Rasmus Dahlin joined Frölunda HC as a 16-year-old.
During their first practice together in the Swedish Hockey League, Dahlin made Olofsson look silly.
“He got the puck on the blue line and I was going out toward him, and he just put it between my legs and scores,” Olofsson said Wednesday after the Sabres opened development ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Shortly after the Sabres introduced first overall pick Rasmus Dahlin to the local media Monday, prospect Alexander Nylander emerged from the locker room clad in workout pants and a hoody and hopped on an escalator inside KeyBank Center.
Nylander, 20, was bound for HarborCenter, where he has been skating during a summer so significant it could decide his future.
“Probably the most important offseason of training in his young life, really,” Sabres assistant ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – On Saturday, a day after the Sabres drafted Rasmus Dahlin, the first overall pick was still walking around American Airlines Center proudly wearing his Blue and Gold jersey.
Most first-round selections don’t show up for the later rounds of the NHL Draft. But the day in Dallas provided the slick defenseman another opportunity to experience what he said “was my best time in my life.”
“To be able to be a part of ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the Sabres’ 48-year existence, players of all talents wore No. 26 before the team awarded the digits to defenseman Rasmus Dahlin today.
Two-time 40-goal scorer Thomas Vanek sported it. So did Randy Wyrozub, one of the franchise’s first players. The Sabres issued the number 20 times before Dahlin, according to hockey-reference.com.... Read the full article
DALLAS – Matej Pekar’s smile told the story. In the moments after the Buffalo Sabres drafted the Czech winger in the fourth round, 94th overall, Saturday, it never left his face.
About 10 months ago, the NHL Draft wasn’t exactly on Pekar’s radar.
“Before the season, I was like, ‘Draft, what is it? I’m not going to get drafted,’” Pekar said inside American Airlines Center.
So sitting at a table wearing a blue Buffalo Sabres ... Read the full article
DALLAS – For the time being at least, Ryan O’Reilly, the versatile center several teams are trying to pry away from the Sabres, is still with Buffalo.
General manager Jason Botterill, who’s expected to overhaul the NHL’s worst team this offseason, left the NHL Draft on Saturday without making any player trades.
Of course, the league’s busy season is just getting underway. Teams can talk to free agents starting Monday and begin signing them ... Read the full article