Ron Rolston took over as coach on Feb. 20. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres facing plenty of questions as first training camp under Ron Rolston begins

BUFFALO – The Sabres convene for training camp physicals today inside the First Niagara Center, for better or worse, almost the same team that ended a disappointing, 11th-place season 137 days ago.

Other than a busy draft day and reacquiring 34-year-old defenseman Henrik Tallinder, the rebuilding club remained quiet throughout the summer.

Starting goalie Ryan Miller and leading scorer Thomas Vanek, two veteran stars rumored to be on the trading block, ... Read the full article

Nathan Gerbe played 188 games for the Sabres. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Nathan Gerbe’s Sabres career over with team planning buyout

BUFFALO – Nathan Gerbe’s Sabres career is over.

The team placed the diminutive winger on waivers Wednesday for the purpose of buying him out, his agent, Jordan Neumann, told the Times Herald.

When asked if Gerbe had any warning, Neumann replied, “Absolutely none.” The Sabres still hadn’t contacted Neumann as of early Wednesday afternoon. Neumann said he understands the business, however.

Sabres general manager Darcy Regier told the media at least three times recently, ... Read the full article

Darcy Regier should be busy today. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

With 10 picks and stars to deal, draft day could dramatically change rebuilding Sabres

NEWARK, N.J. – By tonight, following what promises to be a busy, even chaotic day at the NHL Entry Draft inside the Prudential Center, the Buffalo Sabres could be radically reshaped for the future.

With four of the first 52 picks in a deep draft, including the eighth and 16th selections, the Sabres should nab some elite prospects. But general manager Darcy Regier’s rebuild goes beyond simply adding draft picks.

Starting goalie Ryan Miller ... Read the full article

Zemgus Girgensons scored three times in three playoff games. ©2013, Dan Hickling Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Girgensons dynamic during Amerks’ short playoff run

ROCHESTER – Interim Americans coach Chadd Cassidy called the AHL a “man’s league,” and, well, Zemgus Girgensons is still a kid, just 19 years old.

As a teenage rookie, Girgensons was supposed to play a supporting role during the Amerks’ first-round playoff series against the powerhouse Toronto Marlies. The Latvian winger scored only six goals in 61 regular-season games this year.

But Girgensons, a hard-hitting prospect the Buffalo Sabres moved up to select 14th... Read the full article

Johan Larsson has played three games with Rochester. ©2013, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Amerks coach Cassidy already impressed by new Sabres prospect Larsson

BUFFALO – Chadd Cassidy called Johan Larsson’s new situation “very difficult.” A week ago, the 20-year-old prospect was preparing for his second NHL game. Then Minnesota yanked the center from its morning skate.

Not only was Larsson going back to the AHL, the Wild had sent him to the Sabres as a key figure in the Jason Pominville trade.

So far, Larsson has impressed Cassidy through three games, scoring one goal and three points.... Read the full article

Matt Hackett played well during his three seasons in Houston. ©2013, PhotoGraphics Photography, AHL

Goalie prospect Hackett upbeat about future with Sabres

BUFFALO – Matt Hackett figured the Minnesota Wild would eventually trade a goaltending prospect. The team possessed two similar youngsters in the 23-year-old Hackett and Darcy Kuemper.

With Niklas Backstrom entrenched as the upstart Wild’s No. 1 goalie, there simply wasn’t room for everyone.

Still, when the Wild yanked him from the ice during the team’s morning skate Wednesday, Hackett “was pretty shocked,” he said.

“It just caught me off guard, I guess,” Hackett said ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville played his first game with the Wild on Thursday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Pominville calls trade from Sabres ‘a shock,’ makes Wild debut

BUFFALO – Jason Pominville felt his 11-year run with the Sabres organization could be ending. Before Wednesday’s trade deadline, the struggling team asked its captain to submit a list of eight clubs he could refuse a trade to. The Sabres, a colossal disappointment this season, seemed ripe for a major shakeup.

Still, when Sabres general manager Darcy Regier called Wednesday and said he had been traded to Minnesota, the star winger was shocked.

“It’s still ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville became a Sabres regular in 2005-06. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres thinking long-term after trading captain Pominville to Wild

BUFFALO – Instead of trading captain Jason Pominville to the Minnesota Wild before the deadline Wednesday, the 13th-place Sabres could’ve tried staying in the playoff chase and acquiring another player to make a run at eighth place, general manager Darcy Regier said.

But the Sabres, whose owner, Terry Pegula, has spent tens of millions of dollars pursuing his championship dream, no longer embrace that kind of philosophy.

They’ve started thinking long-term.

“The preference ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville played 578 games with the Sabres. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres shift focus to future after trading Pominville to Wild

BUFFALO – The Minnesota Wild first asked the Sabres about star winger Jason Pominville three weeks ago, general manager Darcy Regier.

When the Wild’s interest diminished, Regier still approached his captain for a list of eight teams he could refuse a trade to. Regier said he had “no real interest” in trading Pominville, although he wanted to keep his options open.

Then, Tuesday night, Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher, who had been talking with Regier ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville will reportedly leave the Sabres. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Report: Sabres trade captain Pominville to Wild

BUFFALO – RDS is reporting the Sabres traded captain Jason Pominville to the Minnesota Wild this afternoon.

It’s believed winger Johan Larsson and goalie Matt Hackett are coming back to the Sabres.

Pominville said Tuesday in Pittsburgh he understood he could get dealt.

“I understand the business of things,” Pominville said. “I understand (general manager) Darcy (Regier) has a job to do, and he’s trying to do his best to do what’s best for the ... Read the full article