Jaroslav Halak spent five days with the Sabres last season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres face stiff test in surging Isles

BUFFALO – Since creeping to within four points of the final playoff spot Dec. 15, the Sabres have lost four straight games, earning just a single point for Sunday’s 4-3 overtime loss in Boston.

Are the Sabres swooning again? Opponents have scored a whopping 20 goals during their skid.

Or is this just a normal part of a young club’s growth? A team battered by injuries and illness had the lead in two straight road ... Read the full article

Connor Knapp would become the NHL-record ninth goalie to dress for the Sabres this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres recall goalie Connor Knapp from Amerks

BUFFALO – With goalie Andrey Makarov sent back to Rochester to help the Americans secure a playoff spot, the Sabres recalled Connor Knapp today.

If Knapp backs up Matt Hackett on Saturday in Boston, the Sabres would set an NHL record by dressing their ninth goalie this season, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

They’ve recently lost goalies Jhonas Enroth, Nathan Lieuwen and Michal Neuvirth to injuries and also traded Ryan Miller and Jaroslav Halak. ... Read the full article

Cory Conacher made his Sabres debut Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Cory Conacher asked Blackhawks star Patrick Kane for permission to wear No. 88

BUFFALO – While the Sabres never told newcomer Cory Conacher he couldn’t wear No. 89 again, the winger passed out of respect for Alexander Mogilny, who scored 76 goals in 1992-93.

“I don’t think I’ll be able to get 76 goals in a year, that’s going to be pretty tough,” Conacher joked Sunday inside the First Niagara Center prior to his Sabres debut, a 2-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Conacher then settled on No. ... Read the full article

The Sabres acquired Rostislav Klesla on Wednesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Amerks don’t know when new acquisition Rostislav Klesla will report to AHL club

ROCHESTER – Veteran defenseman Rostislav Klesla, an afterthought in Wednesday’s Jaroslav Halak-Michael Neuvirth trade, still hasn’t reported to the AHL Americans.

Amerks coach Chadd Cassidy said he still expects the 31-year-old Klesla, a veteran of 659 NHL games, to report.

So when will the Czech be joining the club?

“We’re still trying to figure that out at this point,” Cassidy said Friday following the Amerks’ 4-1 win against the Syracuse Crunch inside the Blue ... Read the full article

Matt Moulson played less than one season with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Rebuilding Sabres busy at trade deadline, not done overhauling roster

BUFFALO – Tim Murray said he began his first NHL trade deadline day as a general manager with no expectations, unsure which direction the rebuilding Sabres might go.

By the end Wednesday, Murray had made three notable deals, trading familiar names like Matt Moulson, Cody McCormick and Brayden McNabb while acquiring NHL talent and prospects. He also grabbed Canisius product Cory Conacher off waivers.

Murray, who sent franchise goalie Ryan Miller and captain Steve ... Read the full article

Tim Murray speaks to the media today. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres GM Tim Murray on trade deadline: ‘It’s a good day’

BUFFALO – Tim Murray’s first NHL trade deadline as general manager was a busy one. The Sabres made three deals, sending veterans Jaroslav Halak, Matt Moulson and Cody McCormick away. Murray also made one surprising deal, trading prospect Brayden McNabb to the Los Angeles Kings.

Here’s more from Murray:

On if today was a good day:

“I think it’s a good day. I think the combination of the picks that we’ve added and the young ... Read the full article

Jaroslav Halak dressed for one Sabres game. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres trade goalie Jaroslav Halak to Capitals

BUFFALO – Jaro, we hardly knew ye.

As expected, the Sabres have flipped goalie Jaroslav Halak, trading him to the Washington Capitals today with a 2015 third-round draft pick for goalie Michal Neuvirth and defenseman Rostislav Klesla.

The Sabres acquired the 28-year-old Slovak in Friday’s Ryan Miller trade. Halak never played with the Sabres, only dressing for Monday’s 3-2 loss in Dallas.

Halak, an unrestricted free agent following the season, is 24-9-4 with ... Read the full article

Jaroslav Halak's stay in Buffalo could be brief. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres have plenty of assets to offer before trade deadline

BUFFALO – Expect the rebuilding Sabres to be busy prior to today’s 3 p.m. NHL trade deadline. No one’s off limits this year. Remember, new general manager Tim Murray has no attachment to any players on the roster.

This could be the team’s busiest and biggest deadline ever. Today might help reshape the franchise for the next five or 10 years.

Here are some Sabres who could be dealt and their contract status:

Winger Matt ... Read the full article

Chris Stewart tries to score on Jaroslav Halak during their first Sabres practice Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Leaving Blues for lowly Sabres wasn’t easy for Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart

BUFFALO – They’re only human, you know. Leaving the St. Louis Blues, a legitimate Stanley Cup contender, for the rebuilding Sabres wasn’t easy at first for goalie Jaroslav Halak and winger Chris Stewart.

But the veterans, part of Friday’s blockbuster Ryan Miller-Steve Ott deal, have accepted they’re now playing for the NHL’s worst team, at least temporarily.

Rumors are swirling the Sabres will flip them before Wednesday’s trade deadline. Halak, an unrestricted free agent ... Read the full article

Ted Nolan has talked about a contract extension with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Ted Nolan emotional over Pat LaFontaine’s departure from Sabres, doesn’t want to discuss future

BUFFALO – Pat LaFontaine’s resignation as the Sabres’ president of hockey operations has rocked interim coach Ted Nolan, his close friend.

“It’s tough,” an emotional Nolan said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “I don’t even want to think about it right now, to tell you the truth. It’s that tough.”

Nolan hasn’t spoken to LaFontaine in the past couple of days and called his departure a “big surprise.”

“Everyone knows what kind ... Read the full article