Fans came out to see Rasmus Dahlin on Wednesday. ©2018, Hickling Images

First practice memorable for Rasmus Dahlin, Sabres

BUFFALO – Sabres prospect Victor Olofsson had never heard of hockey’s biggest defense prospect until two seasons ago, when Rasmus Dahlin joined Frölunda HC as a 16-year-old.

During their first practice together in the Swedish Hockey League, Dahlin made Olofsson look silly.

“He got the puck on the blue line and I was going out toward him, and he just put it between my legs and scores,” Olofsson said Wednesday after the Sabres opened development ... Read the full article

Tom Ward has an impressive high school resume. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Tom Ward as assistant coach; Dan Catenacci re-signed

BUFFALO – The Sabres have hired Tom Ward, a top prep coach who groomed Sidney Crosby, Kyle Okposo and other future NHL players at Shattuck-St. Mary’s, as the final assistant on Dan Bylsma’s staff, the team announced this afternoon.

Ward, 52, spent the last 18 seasons as the head coach of the boys prep team at the Minnesota high school, winning nine USA Hockey National Championships and finishing as runner-up twice.

Shattuck is known for ... Read the full article

Cal Petersen made 87 saves in the NCAA's longest game. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie prospect Cal Petersen thriving at Notre Dame

BUFFALO – As the game ticked toward a record length and the shot count grew higher and higher, Cal Petersen’s Notre Dame teammates joked they wanted the goalie to shatter the NCAA single-game saves mark.

“They wanted me to hit the century mark,” the Sabres prospect recalled earlier this month about his record-setting 87-save performance in the Fighting Irish’s 4-3, five-overtime loss March 6. “But they didn’t know if the scoreboard went that high.”

Petersen, ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching skates earlier this week. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Photo: Sabres prospect Hudson Fasching with Team USA at Lake Placid

Winger Hudson Fasching is one of three Buffalo Sabres prospects left at Team USA’s National Junior Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid. J.T. Compher and Anthony Florentino are still participating. The U.S. cut Connor Hurley and Sean Malone on Tuesday.

Based on his past exploits, Fasching, a power forward at the University of Minnesota, should be a lock to make this year’s world junior squad. The 19-year-old, fresh off a 14-goal, 30-point freshman season, had two ... Read the full article

J.T. Compher has played one college season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect J.T. Compher earning notice by agitating opponents

BUFFALO – Early during Sabres development camp, J.T. Compher, proud University of Michigan student-athlete, noticed Hudson Fasching, his roommate from the University of Minnesota, brought a Big Ten shirt.

“I threw it on the ground,” a smiling Compher said. “I didn’t want to see that out of his suitcase again.”

Their rivalry started last season, when Compher’s Wolverines lost three of their four conference meetings to Fasching’s Golden Gophers, who captured the first-ever ... Read the full article

J.T. Compher (left) and Connor Hurley pose Sunday after being selected in the second round. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres purposely went heavy on college prospects during draft

NEWARK, N.J. – More on the Buffalo Sabres’ 2013 NHL Entry Draft selections the Times Herald couldn’t get to earlier:

The Sabres went heavy on college-eligible players by design, using five of their 11 picks on them.

“With so many picks and our contract situation, you don’t want to waste those picks because their contracts all come up at the same time,” amateur scouting director Kevin Devine explained Sunday on the Prudential Center floor after ... Read the full article

Justin Bailey fields questions Sunday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Local prospects Justin Bailey and Sean Malone thrilled to be drafted by Sabres

NEWARK, N.J. – The memory is seared in Justin Bailey’s mind. The Williamsville native vividly remembers watching from his grandparents’ house as Brett Hull’s disputed “No Goal” eliminated his favorite team, the Buffalo Sabres, from the 1999 Stanley Cup final.

“It was crushing for me,” Bailey said Sunday inside the Prudential Center minutes after the Sabres selected him 52nd overall with their third second-round pick in the NHL Entry Draft.

Even as a 3-year-old, ... Read the full article

Nikita Zadorov talks with the media this afternoon. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Darcy Regier says Sabres were close to grabbing fifth pick; Andrej Sekera traded to Carolina

NEWARK, N.J. – How close were the Buffalo Sabres, who owned the eighth and 16th picks in the NHL Entry Draft, to moving up and grabbing the fifth overall pick?

“Pretty close,” Sabres general manager Darcy Regier said this afternoon inside the Prudential Center.

Carolina chose slick Swedish forward Elias Lindholm at No. 5. The Sabres kept their picks and took defensemen Rasmus Ristolainen and Nikita Zadorov.

The Sabres couldn’t have moved up any ... Read the full article