it’s over

Archive:
Foligno

Johan Larsson (22) battles Pittsburgh's Rob Scuderi on Saturday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Three months ago, when the Sabres seemingly banished Johan Larsson to the minors, the 22-year-old’s future here seemed iffy.

Upon arriving in Rochester, Larsson complained about playing on the fourth line with the Sabres, something that angered coach Ted Nolan, who basically told Larsson to shut his mouth.

At that point, Larsson had one goal and six points in 41 NHL games.

Larsson entered Saturday’s season finale against the Pittsburgh Penguins, a 2-0 loss inside the First Niagara Center, as the …

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Mikhail Grigorenko celebrates his first-period goal Monday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Emotionally, the Sabres’ 4-3 victory against the Carolina Hurricanes was a difficult game to play in, coach Ted Nolan said.

The bottom-feeders were skating for pride Monday. They Sabres were trying to stave off clinching 30th place for the second consecutive season.

“When you’re out of the playoffs and you’re trying to lift that emotional level up, it’s quite a challenge,” Nolan said following the Sabres’ third win in the last five outings.

At times, the two lightweights played some ugly, …

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Marcus Foligno has been playing big minutes. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
3

BUFFALO – For about 24 hours, Marcus Foligno enjoyed the family’s bragging rights. The Sabres winger felt good after scoring twice Friday, his first goals in 24 games.

Then Foligno’s older brother, Nick, a breakout star with the Columbus Blue Jackets, outdid him Saturday, scoring his first NHL hat trick and hitting the prestigious 30-goal, 70-point marks.

“He had to go out and one-up me,” Marcus Foligno joked Monday prior to the Sabres’ 4-3 win against the Carolina Hurricanes inside the First …

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Johan Larsson tips the puck past Chicago goalie Scott Darling on Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – In 47 seconds late Friday, the mood inside the First Niagara Center changed dramatically. The Sabres fans worrying their team would pull its most unlikely upset this trying season felt relieved as mighty Chicago Blackhawks quickly roared back.

When Chicago star Jonathan Toews tied it with 1:43 left, the building, which was filled with red Blackhawks jerseys, erupted.

Some hometown fans who had remained quiet as the Sabres erased an early 2-0 deficit and grabbed a 3-2 lead late joined …

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Marcus Foligno was playing some of his best hockey ever in December. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
5

BUFFALO – Given the Sabres’ sorry state these days, it’s almost difficult to remember now. But for a brief stretch earlier this season, they morphed into a young team on the rise, winning a string of exciting games in dramatic fashion.

The rebuilding club triumphed 10 times in 13 games – they have only 20 victories in 75 outings all season – during a rollicking run in November and December, roaring back night after night.

The Sabres were never out of any …

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Mikhail Grigorenko has one goal this season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Sabres center Mikhail Grigorenko appreciates coach Ted Nolan’s honesty and tough love. The 20-year-old Russian sees it as a sign of support.

“I know everyone wants me to succeed in this organization,” Grigorenko said Thursday prior to the Sabres’ 4-3 overtime loss to the Arizona Coyotes inside the First Niagara Center. “Everyone has their ways. Teddy, he thinks being hard on me is only going to help me.”

Nolan ripped Grigorenko following his last demotion to Rochester earlier this month, …

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Mikhail Grigorenko's has played 13 NHL games this season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
4

BUFFALO – Don’t count on seeing Mikhail Grigorenko with the Sabres again this season. Heck, the enigmatic Russian center could be finished here less than three years after getting drafted 12th overall.

Grigorenko’s latest recall lasted one game, Friday’s 3-2 loss in Ottawa. The 20-year-old skated a couple of shifts on the second line before getting demoted to the fourth line. He was sent back down the next morning.

“I didn’t like his play,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said bluntly Monday following …

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Mikhail Grigorenko's recall lasted one game. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Don’t count on seeing Mikhail Grigorenko with the Sabres again this season. Heck, the enigmatic Russian center could be finished here less than three years after getting drafted 12th overall.

Grigorenko’s latest recall lasted one game, Friday’s 3-2 loss in Ottawa. The 20-year-old skated a couple of shifts on the second line before getting demoted to the fourth line. He was sent back down the next morning.

“I didn’t like his play,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said bluntly this afternoon …

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Mikhail Grigorenko has spent most of this season in Rochester. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – For once, center Mikhail Grigorenko can relax a little bit. Eighteen games are left in the Sabres’ trying season. The NHL’s weakest lineup needs reinforcements.

Sabres coach Ted Nolan wouldn’t commit to Grigorenko staying for the rest of the year. But the Russian should get a long look after getting recalled from Rochester again Thursday.

This could be Grigorenko’s best opportunity since his rookie season two years ago.

Grigorenko, the 12th pick in 2012, was excited when he spotted a white …

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Mikhail Grigorenko recently returned from a knee injury. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – For once, center Mikhail Grigorenko can relax a little bit. Eighteen games are left in the Sabres’ trying season. The NHL’s weakest lineup needs reinforcements.

Grigorenko, the 12th pick in 2012, should get a long look after getting recalled from Rochester again this morning.

The Russian was excited when he saw a white practice jersey hanging in his locker today. That meant he would be centering the second line beside Marcus Foligno and captain Brian Gionta.

“I think it’s a really …

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