Jack Eichel drew fans to development camp Monday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel ready to settle in with Sabres

BUFFALO – At around 1:10 p.m. on Monday, most of the 1,000 or so Sabres fans on hand to watch development camp had their eyes focused on the tunnel next to the visiting bench waiting for a glimpse of Jack Eichel.

When the slick center finally touched the First Niagara Center ice for the first time in Sabres gear, the crowd cheered Buffalo’s newest phenom. Cameras snapped photos. Memories were made.

“It was pretty cool,” ... Read the full article

Dan Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Dan Lambert as assistant coach

BUFFALO – When development camp began Monday, there was an unfamiliar face on the ice putting the Sabres prospects through drills inside the First Niagara Center.

Who was it?

During the first session, the Sabres officially announced Dan Lambert’s hire as the third assistant on coach Dan Bylsma’s staff.

The 45-year-old Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last year, leading the junior club to a Western Hockey League championship and a Memorial Cup appearance in his ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel skates this afternoon. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel on cheers from Sabres fans: ‘A special moment’

BUFFALO – At around 1:10 p.m., most of the 1,000 or so Sabres fans inside the First Niagara Center had their eyes focused on the tunnel next to the visiting bench waiting for a glimpse of slick center Jack Eichel at development camp.

When Eichel touched the ice for the first time in Sabres gear, the crowd cheered Buffalo’s newest phenom as cameras went off.

“It was pretty cool,” Eichel said following the first session ... Read the full article

Carlo Colaiacovo didn't sign a contract until October last year. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Carlo Colaiacovo excited for opportunity with Sabres

BUFFALO – Two days after signing a one-year contract with the Sabres, Carlo Colaiacovo hadn’t stopped smiling yet, the defenseman said Sunday.

A year ago, Colaiacovo couldn’t find work. As the summer dragged on, the free agent became uneasy. The stress wore on him.

Colaiacovo eventually decided to bolt to a Russian club in the KHL. But the contract took so long to consummate a one-year-deal with Philadelphia materialized in October before he could leave.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel will be the talk of development camp. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres have plenty of shiny prospects to showcase beside Jack Eichel

BUFFALO – The thousands of Sabres fans who visit the First Niagara Center this week to watch the team’s prospects should leave with at least one special, indelible memory. For the first time up close on home ice, they’ll get to see slick center Jack Eichel.

Sure, it’s only a summer development camp. But watching Eichel in Sabres gear just two weeks after he was drafted second overall will likely never be forgotten.

Of course, ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly's contract kicks in for 2016-17. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres sign Ryan O’Reilly to 7-year, $52.5 million contract extension

BUFFALO – That didn’t take long. A week after the Sabres acquired Ryan O’Reilly in a blockbuster trade with the Colorado Avalanche, they locked up their new No. 1 center with a max deal Friday, a whopping seven-year, $52.5 million contract extension.

It’s the biggest contract in franchise history, surpassing the seven-year, $50 million deal the Sabres gave winger Thomas Vanek in 2007 when they matched the Edmonton Oilers’ offer sheet.

The contract has a ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel talks Wednesday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel happy to join Sabres: ‘There’s such a bright future here’

BUFFALO – Before Sabres center Jack Eichel left for his three-week gig with Team USA’s entry at the world championship in the spring, the 18-year-old had some doubts he was ready for the NHL.

But the short experience in the Czech Republic taught Eichel some valuable lessons. He talked to guys, developed a sense of what it’s like to be a pro and gained confidence standing out on the ice against men, many of whom ... Read the full article

The Sabres drafted Jack Eichel on Friday. ©2015, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel signs entry-level deal with Sabres

BUFFALO – It’s official: Jack Eichel will play for the Sabres next season. The 18-year-old is turning pro.

Eichel, the second overall pick Friday, signed a three-year, entry-level deal today and will leave Boston University after one season.

It was widely expected Eichel would join the NHL. The center spoke glowingly about the city and team after getting drafted, saying he wanted to be a part of the Sabres. Players of his caliber ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly sees a bright future in Buffalo. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Ryan O’Reilly wants leadership role with Sabres

BUFFALO – Sabres center Ryan O’Reilly’s ready to tackle a new challenge. During his first six NHL seasons, the 24-year-old wasn’t viewed as one of the Avalanche’s leaders. Colorado stars Matt Duchesne, Gabriel Landeskog and Nathan MacKinnon often overshadowed him.

But O’Reilly, acquired in a blockbuster deal Friday at the NHL Draft, will have a new role next season. The Sabres want him to be one of the guys to shepherd a team filled with ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly spent six seasons in Colorado. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Ryan O’Reilly excited to join Sabres; Update: Phil Housley elected to Hall of Fame

BUFFALO – Sabres center Ryan O’Reilly’s ready to tackle a new challenge. During his first six NHL seasons, the 24-year-old wasn’t viewed as one of the Avalanche’s leaders. Colorado stars Matt Duchesne, Gabriel Landeskog and Nathan MacKinnon often overshadowed him.

But O’Reilly, acquired in a blockbuster deal Friday at the NHL Draft, will have a new role next season. The Sabres want him to be one of the guys to shepherd a team filled with ... Read the full article