Zemgus Girgensons sat out two games last week. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Zemgus Girgensons earns promotion after benching

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Zemgus Girgensons played 301 NHL games over nearly four and a half seasons before experiencing his first benching.

Naturally, sitting twice as a healthy scratch last week felt unusual for Girgensons, who has zero goals in his last 20 outings.

“I’ve been there injured, but it was definitely different being scratched, not a good feeling,” Girgensons said this morning. “It makes you feel a little bit useless, you always want to ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching rebounded in Rochester after a weak training camp. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Hudson Fasching wants to showcase heavy style

PITTSBURGH – Instead of battling for an NHL roster spot during training camp, Sabres prospect Hudson Fasching started slowly before Buffalo demoted him early.

As a rookie last season, Fasching’s strong camp forced the Sabres to keep him. This year, however, the winger never really contended for a spot.

“It wasn’t the camp that I wanted,” Fasching said Saturday prior to his NHL season debut, a 5-1 loss to the Penguins inside PPG Paints Arena. ... Read the full article

Zemgus Girgensons has one goal this season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Zemgus Girgensons mired in scoring slump

BUFFALO – The most vivid memory of Zemgus Girgensons’ NHL debut isn’t the goal he scored in Detroit’s historic Joe Louis Arena. No, something far less exciting stands out to the Sabres winger.

On Girgensons’ first shifts Oct. 2, 2013, he said star Pavel Datsyuk’s line kept hemming the Sabres in their own zone.

“I definitely remember that more than I scored a goal,” Girgensons said Friday prior to his 300th NHL game.... Read the full article

Zemgus Girgensons has a 17-game point drought. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Zemgus Girgensons struggling at 300-game milestone

BUFFALO – The most vivid memory of Zemgus Girgensons’ NHL debut isn’t the goal he scored in Detroit’s historic Joe Louis Arena. No, something far less exciting stands out to the Sabres winger.

On Girgensons’ first shifts Oct. 2, 2013, he said star Pavel Datsyuk’s line kept hemming the Sabres in their own zone.

“I definitely remember that more than I scored a goal,” Girgensons said this morning prior to his 300th NHL game.... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart is on a pace for a career-low 16 goals. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sam Reinhart all over Sabres lineup

BUFFALO – Want a telltale sign of a bad team? Constant line juggling.

In the last week, for example, Sabres forward Sam Reinhart has skated at right wing beside centers Jack Eichel, Ryan O’Reilly and Johan Larsson.

The Sabres’ futility – they’ve lost nine of the last 10 games and have the NHL’s worst offense – has forced coach Phil Housley to constantly tinker, moving players all over the lineup.... Read the full article

Jordan Nolan had a two-goal performance last week. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres promote Jordan Nolan to scoring line

BUFFALO – To ignite the NHL’s worst offense, Sabres coach Phil Housley has been changing lines almost every day, moving players up and down the lineup.

So it wasn’t shocking to see winger Jordan Nolan, who has scored 22 times in 315 career NHL games, at left wing on a “scoring” line beside center Ryan O’Reilly and Kyle Okposo during this morning’s practice.

When you’ve been blanked in two straight games, promoting a fourth-liner ... Read the full article

Jacob Josefson played six games before getting hurt. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jacob Josefson ready to play

BUFFALO – Following his first full team practice since spraining his ankle Oct. 15, Sabres center Jacob Josefson pronounced himself ready to play.

“I’m anxious to get in,” Josefson said this afternoon inside KeyBank Center. “I’ve been on the side a while. I’m ready whenever they want me.”

So will Josefson, who has missed 15 games, return for Wednesday’s home tilt against the Minnesota Wild?... Read the full article

Jack Eichel played one of his better games in recent weeks Monday. ©2017, Michline Veluvolu, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jack Eichel shuffled around lineup against Blue Jackets

BUFFALO – The optics showed Jack Eichel had been demoted. For most of Monday, the slick Sabres center skated between Zemgus Girgensons and Jason Pominville, one of four new lines coach Phil Housley assembled.

Based on recent production, the trio Eichel briefly skated on was the third line. Just don’t tell Housley.

“There’s no third line,” Housley said prior to Monday’s 3-2 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets inside KeyBank Center.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has scored just once in the last 11 games. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Line switches put Sabres’ Jack Eichel with new wingers

BUFFALO – The optics say Jack Eichel has been demoted. This morning, the slick Sabres center skated between Zemgus Girgensons and Jason Pominville, one of four new lines coach Phil Housley assembled.

Based on recent production, Eichel’s trio is the third line. Just don’t tell Housley, whose Sabres have lost five straight games (0-3-2).

“There’s no third line,” Housley said this morning after the Sabres prepared for tonight’s tilt against the Columbus Blue Jackets inside ... Read the full article

Evander Kane has been the Sabres' hottest scorer. ©2017, Michline Veluvolu, Olean Times Herald

Reeling Sabres generate little early, lose to Hurricanes

BUFFALO – Fresh off an uninspired loss that rankled coach Phil Housley and, allegedly, his players, the Sabres responded by going the first 17 minutes without a shot on goal.

Oh, the Sabres still generated a scoring chance early in Saturday’s 3-1 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes. For the second straight night, fourth-line winger Jordan Nolan, who has a 24-game goal drought dating back to Jan. 31, enjoyed a rare breakaway.

Nolan missed the ... Read the full article