Tyler Ennis (63) fends off Justin Kea on Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Tyler Ennis lobbied for new linemate Ryan O’Reilly

BUFFALO – Their paths had never crossed until five months ago, when Team Canada chose Sabres winger Tyler Ennis and center Ryan O’Reilly to represent its world championship squad in the Czech Republic.

For three weeks, as the Canadians roared to a gold medal, O’Reilly’s many talents, the little details in his game, wowed Ennis. By the end of the tournament, they had become good friends.

When Ennis got home, he spoke to Tim Murray. ... Read the full article

Dan Bylsma keeps wondering whose loud voice he's hearing. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Goalie Robin Lehner to start against Senators; Jack Eichel out

BUFFALO – The voice is so loud, Sabres coach Dan Bylsma keeps looking back on the ice and wondering who the heck is yelling.

“His voice is like his size, it’s big,” Bylsma said about 6-foot-5 goalie Robin Lehner, who will start Wednesday’s preseason home opener inside the First Niagara Center against his old team, the Ottawa Senators.

Lehner, as anyone who has watched a training camp practice quickly learned, loves to communicate on the ... Read the full article

Mike Weber couldn't stop smiling Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres excited to begin new era

BUFFALO – For nine minutes, defenseman Mike Weber couldn’t stop smiling. All of the frustration, all of the pain of experiencing consecutive 30th-place finishes has vanished thanks to a dramatic offseason overhaul, and the gritty veteran wanted to talk about the new-look Sabres.

“All smiles, wow, what a difference an offseason will make,” Weber said Friday. “Management told us leaving here (last season) they’d make the proper changes to get us in and ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel wore No. 41 again today. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jack Eichel wants to earn No. 15

BUFFALO – To rookie Jack Eichel, he hasn’t secured a spot on the Sabres yet.

That’s why the slick center, one of the biggest prospects in recent memory, initially hesitated to accept teammate Matt Moulson’s invitation to live with his family. That’s why Eichel, 18, hasn’t switched from No. 41, a development camp number he was given by the equipment staff, to No. 15, a number he picked.

Everyone in Buffalo seems to be wearing ... Read the full article

Evander Kane wants to score 40 or 50 goals. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Evander Kane sets lofty goal

BUFFALO – The way Sabres winger Evander Kane sees it, after scoring 30 times four seasons ago, he firmly established his goal-scoring prowess.

“Thirty is just kind of a set number,” Kane said Thursday after training camp opened inside the First Niagara Center. “I’ve already scored 30. So maybe I want to score 40 or 50.”

Yes, Kane, seven months removed from shoulder surgery, has set the bar extremely high for his first season with ... Read the full article

Brian Gionta sees the Sabres progressing. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres brimming with optimism

BUFFALO – In Denver, a city with almost 400,000 more people and four major league teams, Ryan O’Reilly blended in. Fans rarely recognized the new Sabres center on the street.

“I guess the market wasn’t the same as it is here, the excitement around,” O’Reilly said Thursday inside the First Niagara Center after the Sabres reported to training camp for physicals.

In hockey-mad Buffalo, O’Reilly, a June 26 acquisition from the Colorado Avalanche, keeps getting ... Read the full article

Ryan O'Reilly gets stopped by fans around Buffalo. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres see progress, feel excitement for new season

BUFFALO – In Denver, a city with almost 400,000 more people and four major league teams, Ryan O’Reilly blended in. Fans rarely recognized the new Sabres center on the street.

“I guess the market wasn’t the same as it is here, the excitement around,” O’Reilly said this morning inside the First Niagara Center after the Sabres reported to training camp for physicals.

In hockey-mad Buffalo, O’Reilly, a June 26 acquisition, keeps getting stopped by fans.... Read the full article

The Sabres acquired Jason Kasdorf in February. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jason Kasdorf could be Sabres’ best goalie prospect

BUFFALO – Some of hockey’s biggest young names switched teams in the Sabres’ blockbuster seven-player trade with the Winnipeg Jets in February.

The Sabres paid a hefty price for 30-goal winger Evander Kane and workhorse defenseman Zach Bogosian, giving up slick defenseman Tyler Myers, forward prospects Joel Armia and Brendan Lemieux, veteran winger Drew Stafford and a 2015 first-round pick.

Lost in the hubbub was a college goalie the Jets quietly sent the Sabres in ... Read the full article

A fan shows off his new Jack Eichel jersey Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Jack Eichel chooses No. 15; Andrew Allen hired as goalie coach

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s not thinking too far ahead. But “if the opportunity presented itself to make the team” next season, he plans to wear No. 15.

Of course, minutes after he mentioned his first NHL number Friday morning, the Sabres tweeted they would be a selling a limited number of Eichel jerseys hours later at the First Niagara Center prior to the development camp scrimmage.

Before the gates even opened, the line stretched from ... Read the full article

No. 15 has some significance to Jack Eichel. ©2015, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel will wear No. 15 for Sabres

BUFFALO – Your long wait is over, Sabres fans. Jack Eichel said this morning that “if the opportunity presented itself to make the team” next season, he would wear No. 15.

Of course, minutes after he mentioned the number, the Sabres tweeted a limited number of Eichel No. 15 jerseys will be available tonight at the First Niagara Center prior to the development camp scrimmage.

Eichel has been wearing No. 41 this week, a number ... Read the full article