Brian Gionta retired Monday. ©2018, Hickling Images

Former Sabres captain Brian Gionta helped change hockey

BUFFALO – Twenty years ago, diminutive players like Brian Gionta – the ones teams list at, say, 5-foot-9 but are clearly much smaller – rarely received a chance in the NHL.

Sure, once in a while an undersized talent would break through. But for the most part, the league coveted size.

Then in the early 2000s, a few small forwards – Gionta, Daniel Briere and Martin St. Louis – started seizing their chances and morphing ... Read the full article

Zach Bogosian is beginning his 11th NHL season. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Zach Bogosian believes he has ‘whole new level to bring’

BUFFALO – Since the Sabres are off today, defenseman Zach Bogosian plans to enjoy some tranquility and go fishing, one of his passions away from the rink.

Bogosian, who loves bass fishing, said he finds a special peace in himself surrounded by the quietness on the water.

“I get away from everything, everyone,” Bogosian said prior to Saturday’s 3-2 preseason loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs inside KeyBank Center, his first game action since Jan. ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart ended his holdout Wednesday. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Tage Thompson promoted; Zach Bogosian, Sam Reinhart to debut

BUFFALO – Instead of utilizing Sam Reinhart or Kyle Okposo at right wing on the No. 1 line tonight, Sabres coach Phil Housley will give youngster Tage Thompson a look beside center Jack Eichel and Jeff Skinner.

Thompson, 20, scored a nifty goal in Friday’s 5-3 loss in Toronto, carrying the puck into the zone before toe-dragging and unleashing a wicked wrist shot from the right circle.

“I really liked what he brought to ... Read the full article

Chad Johnson has poor numbers this season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Chad Johnson positive through rough stretch

BUFFALO – To Chad Johnson, his weak numbers are deceiving. Other than a poor 20-minute outing, the Sabres goalie believes he has played well this season.

Naturally, Johnson is frustrated. In 12 games, he is 1-5-3 with a ghastly 3.76 goals-against average and an .880 save percentage, his lone win coming Oct. 15.

Among goalies with 10 or more appearances this season, only Vegas Golden Knights rookie Maxime Lagace has a higher goals-against average and ... Read the full article

Chad Johnson has one win this season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Chad Johnson feeling good about game

BUFFALO – To Chad Johnson, his weak numbers are deceiving. Other than a poor 20-minute outing, the Sabres goalie believes he has played well this season.

Naturally, Johnson is frustrated. In 12 games, he is 1-5-3 with a ghastly 3.76 goals-against average and an .880 save percentage, his lone win coming Oct. 15.

Among goalies with 10 or more appearances this season, only Vegas Golden Knights rookie Maxime Lagace has a higher goals-against average and ... Read the full article

Jordan Nolan (17) celebrate his first goal Wednesday. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Reeling Sabres lacking accountability among players

BUFFALO – Jordan Nolan grew up in a winning culture. The Sabres winger won two Stanley Cups in his first three seasons with the Los Angeles Kings.

To Nolan, the Kings’ accountability helped buoy their success. If you made a mistake or needed a push, someone would tell you.

“If I made a mistake in my fifth year, a higher guy was telling me, ‘You need to work harder, you need to get that puck ... Read the full article

©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres Tyler Ennis, Marcus Foligno happy with Wild

BUFFALO – In Minnesota, the standard is much different, nothing like popular former Sabres wingers Tyler Ennis and Marcus Foligno experienced here.

“You’re coming to a team that’s goal is to win the Stanley Cup, and Buffalo’s still in a rebuild,” Ennis said Wednesday prior to scoring his first goal in 10 games early in his return to KeyBank Center.

The reeling Sabres rank last in the Eastern Conference, losers of seven straight games after ... Read the full article

Marcus Foligno fought regularly with the Sabres. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres Tyler Ennis, Marcus Foligno enjoying fresh start with Wild

BUFFALO – In Minnesota, the standard is much different, nothing like popular former Sabres wingers Tyler Ennis and Marcus Foligno experienced here.

“You’re coming to a team that’s goal is to win the Stanley Cup, and Buffalo’s still in a rebuild,” Ennis said this afternoon.

Yes, the reeling Sabres rank last in the Eastern Conference, losers of six straight games entering tonight’s tilt. Despite a 9-8-3 record, the Wild are last in the ultra-competitive Central ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville knows a season can turn around quickly. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jason Pominville, Marco Scandella learned from Wild tenure

BUFFALO – While perhaps a step slower at 34 years old, Sabres winger Jason Pominville still showcases many of the talents that have helped him score 267 goals and once made him an NHL All-Star.

Wednesday against his old team, the Minnesota Wild, Pominville will likely be reunited with center Jack Eichel and Evander Kane. At an age when most players are retired or graying, Pominville is still playing on a top scoring line.... Read the full article

Marco Scandella has already started enjoying Buffalo. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Marco Scandella embracing Buffalo, fresh start

BUFFALO – Minutes after his first practice with the Sabres ended, a smiling Marco Scandella entered a media scrum and could hardly contain his excitement.

“Coming to a new team, it feels like my first year again,” the loquacious defenseman said Friday following the first sessions of training camp inside HarborCenter.... Read the full article