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Connor Knapp made 22 saves Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – On March 15, more than 4,000 miles from Buffalo, Sabres goalie Connor Knapp stopped 24 shots in the Alaska Aces’ 4-2 win against the Colorado Eagles in Anchorage.

Twenty-nine days later, Knapp, the sixth goalie on the organization’s depth chart, made his first NHL start in the Sabres’ 4-3 shootout loss to the New York Islanders.

Knapp grew up in York, a small town about 30 miles from Rochester.

“It’s crazy,” the 23-year-old told a throng of cameras and reporters after …

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John Scott and his teammates have endured a lot this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

Mercifully, 193 days after it started, the most tumultuous season in Buffalo Sabres history will end around 7:30 p.m. Sunday inside the First Niagara Center.

The finale can’t come quickly enough for the reeling Sabres, losers of six straight games and 17 of their last 19.

In a season filled with turmoil, the Sabres endured arguably their roughest game this afternoon in Boston, losing five more players to injury, including goalie Matt Hackett, in the 4-1 setback to the Bruins.

Eleven players are …

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Cody Hodgson had played center his entire career. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Ted Nolan doesn’t want to project his lineup too far into the future. But the Sabres coach said he must evaluate his top six forwards these last two weeks so they receive enough ice time next season.

If Tyler Ennis and Zemgus Girgensons are his top centers, where does that leave Cody Hodgson?

For the time being, on the left wing, a position Hodgson had played once in his career before Saturday, during a 2008 exhibition game.

“I don’t think I …

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Ville Leino didn't practice Friday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Interim Sabres coach Ted Nolan said what happened to forward Ville Leino early in Thursday’s 6-1 loss in Nashville “was strange.”

Leino experienced some lightheadedness and left the game. He didn’t practice Friday.

“He just started not feeling very well,” Nolan said after the Sabres prepared for tonight’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning inside the First Niagara Center, their first home tilt following an awful 1-4 road trip. “When something like that happens, you got to make sure you’re …

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Nicolas Deslauriers played his second NHL game Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Nicolas Deslauriers started off as a fill-in. The Manchester Monarchs only had two forwards lines early in training camp, so the 23-year-old, one of 10 defensemen on the AHL club, moved up to the wing.

“They put me up front just to basically fill out the spots because there was nobody,” Deslauriers said Sunday prior to the Sabres’ 2-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks inside the First Niagara Center, his second NHL game. “The first game in the ‘A,’ …

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Matt D'Agostini zooms in on Boston goalie Chad Johnson for the overtime winner Wednesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Having just won an Olympic silver medal, Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth could finally find some comfort in an otherwise miserable season. Sure, the struggling backup had just one win all year, but he had been Sweden’s No. 2 netminder behind Henrik Lundqvist, his idol.

Perhaps Enroth’s two weeks at the Sochi Games generated some much-needed confidence. The 25-year-old dazzled at times Wednesday, making some brilliant saves against the Boston Bruins before a capacity crowd of 19,070 fans inside the …

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Ryan Miller (30) tries to stop Pittsburgh's Brandon Sutter with Mike Weber (6) behind him Wednesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Wednesday wasn’t an Olympic audition for goalie Ryan Miller, Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma said hours before his potent Penguins throttled the hapless Sabres 5-1. He’s judging Miller on his body of work, not one game.

Bylsma, Team USA’s coach for the upcoming Sochi Games, knows what most NHL observers know: Miller’s played splendidly most of the season under the most trying of circumstances.

The Sabres’ third straight loss illustrated that. Once again, they couldn’t support Miller, an unrestricted free agent …

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Linus Omark played 66 games with Edmonton. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – So far, 11 games into his Sabres career, Linus Omark has been a colossal disappointment, compiling zero goals, two assists and seven healthy scratches for the NHL’s worst team.

But the slick winger will return tonight against the Edmonton Oilers, his old team, after sitting the last three games. The Swede might even skate on the top line.

Clearly, interim Sabres coach Ted Nolan hopes a visit from the Oilers ignites Omark, who played 66 games over parts of three …

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Linus Omark has sat the last three games. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Linus Omark smiled today when a reporter asked him if he was looking forward to facing Edmonton, his old team.

“I would be lying if I said no,” the winger said inside the First Niagara Center after the Sabres prepared for the Oilers, Monday’s opponent. “Of course, it’s going to be a fun game. I know a lot of guys on the team.”

Omark, a healthy scratch the last three games, will return against the Oilers, who he played 66 …

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Matt Moulson has nine goals in 40 games with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

An upper-body injury will likely sideline Buffalo Sabres winger Matt Moulson until after the Olympic break, Ted Nolan told reporters this afternoon in Denver.

“He took a pretty good bang last night,” the interim coach said.

Shane Doan’s hit injured Moulson late in the Thursday’s 3-2 win in Phoenix.

The Sabres have four games left before the break, starting with Saturday afternoon’s tilt in Colorado. Nolan said there’s a small chance the 30-year-old could return before their final game Thursday. They resume play …

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