Rasmus Ristolainen plays big minutes. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hope to have healthy defense corps for opener

BUFFALO – Right now, the revamped Sabres blue line that has received so much attention for its puck-moving abilities is missing some key pieces.

Just three days before the season opener, Zach Bogosian and Jake McCabe are sidelined. The Sabres still have nine defensemen in training camp, a number that might shrink in the coming days.

So, could the Sabres potentially have the defense corps they envisioned all summer together for Thursday’s tilt against the ... Read the full article

Zach Bogosian was injured Friday. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Zach Bogosian day-to-day

BUFFALO – Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian, who left Friday’s preseason finale with a lower-body injury, is day-to-day, coach Phil Housley said this afternoon.

So, could Bogosian play in Thursday’s season opener against the Montreal Canadiens? Housley said the veteran’s injury isn’t as serious as the Sabres first believed.

“He seems to be in a good spot, so we’ll know more tomorrow,” Housley said inside HarborCenter.... Read the full article

Justin Bailey is one of the Sabres' top forward prospects. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres send Justin Bailey, Nick Deslauriers to Amerks

BUFFALO – The Sabres trimmed their roster by four today, sending wingers Justin Bailey, Nick Deslauriers and defenseman Taylor Fedun to the AHL and releasing defenseman Cody Goloubef from his tryout.

Deslauriers and Fedun must clear waivers before reporting to the Rochester Americans. The Sabres scratched all four players for Friday’s 3-1 home loss to the New York Islanders, the preseason finale.

The Sabres have 27 players – 16 forwards, nine defensemen and two ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel will face Sidney Crosby tonight in Pittsburgh. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres to face loaded Penguins lineup

BUFFALO – It’s no secret NHL teams field stronger preseason lineups at home, especially toward the end. So Sabres coach Phil Housley knew the Pittsburgh Penguins would dress better players tonight than the first time the teams met eight days ago.

“It’s getting toward the end, right?” Housley said this morning after the Sabres skated inside HarborCenter. “They’re trying to get their guys geared up. But at the same time, it puts us in a ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly has worn an 'A' the last two seasons. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Phil Housley in no hurry to name new Sabres captain

BUFFALO – Instead of using a temporary captain this preseason, Sabres coach Phil Housley has named three alternate captains each game.

A slew of players, including perhaps the top three candidates for the vacant captaincy – Jack Eichel, Kyle Okposo and Ryan O’Reilly – have worn an ‘A.’

Housley is in no rush to name a captain.... Read the full article

Taylor Fedun earned his most NHL duty last season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Depth defensemen fighting to stay with Sabres out of training camp

BUFFALO – Shortly after enjoying the longest stint of his NHL career, defenseman Taylor Fedun re-signed with the Sabres early in the summer, inking a two-year deal.

What made the contract significant wasn’t just the length – many depth players don’t earn multi-year deals – but the fact a new regime offered it.

Fedun, 29, provided valuable depth last season, playing 27 NHL games, 12 more than the previous three seasons combined. In the AHL, ... Read the full article

Auston Matthews scored 40 goals as a rookie last season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres won’t see Leafs for months after weekend set

BUFFALO – How’s this for a scheduling quirk? After this weekend’s home-and-home preseason set with the Maple Leafs – the Sabres play tonight in Toronto – the fierce rivals don’t meet again until March 5.

“It’s crazy,” Sabres coach Phil Housley said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “When I looked at the schedule, here’s one of the rivals in our division, we’re not going to see them until March. Hopefully, they’re going to be real ... Read the full article

Phil Housley wants the Sabres to get after it tonight. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Phil Housley excited, nervous for coaching debut

BUFFALO – Come about 7 p.m., just before the Sabres’ preseason opener against the Carolina Hurricanes, rookie coach Phil Housley will start feeling some butterflies.

“I’d be lying to you if I say when the game comes I’m (not) going to be nervous,” Housley said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “Being a head coach for the first time behind the bench, it’s quite exciting for me.”... Read the full article

Robin Lehner signed a one-year contract in July. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Robin Lehner not out to prove himself

BUFFALO – Robin Lehner’s agents kept telling him to take a one-year contract. After all, the Sabres goalie could parlay another strong season into a lucrative long-term deal.

But fresh off a campaign in which Lehner established himself as the Sabres’ starter and posted the NHL’s 10th-highest save percentage, he wanted a long contract right away.... Read the full article

Taylor Fedun played 27 NHL games last season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres sign Taylor Fedun to two-year contract

BUFFALO – The Sabres added defense depth today, re-signing Taylor Fedun to a two-year, two-way contract.

The 29-year-old could’ve become an unrestricted free agent Saturday.

Fedun split last season between the NHL and AHL, compiling career-high seven assists and seven points in 27 games, all career highs.

The Princeton product also had five goals and 23 points in 29 appearances with the Rochester Americans.

Fedun showcased some of his offensive prowess on the power play ... Read the full article