Robin Lehner has a history with Tim Murray. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres believe goalie Robin Lehner worth high price

SUNRISE, Fla. – Parting with the 21st pick in a deep NHL Draft wasn’t easy for Tim Murray. With the Buffalo Sabres locked into picking Jack Eichel second overall Friday, the general manager recently told his scouts to focus on the team’s other first-round pick.

Murray wanted them to go deep and dig into those prospects.

But the Sabres desperately needed a goalie for next season. Murray had choices. Plenty of established ones – ... Read the full article

Tyler Ennis (63) and goalie Ryan Miller try to fend off Ottawa's Chris Neil on Friday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Ron Rolston upset with Sabres’ poor effort in shutout loss to Senators

BUFFALO – Don’t let the close score, the Sabres’ bevy of prime scoring chances or Ryan Miller’s brilliant goaltending performance overshadow a pretty wretched effort.

“We didn’t play a very good hockey game at the end of the day,” a visibly agitated Ron Rolston said Friday following the Sabres’ exciting 1-0 loss to the Ottawa Senators in the home opener inside the First Niagara Center.

The coach acknowledged the obvious, saying Miller, whose scintillating 45-save ... Read the full article

Drew Bagnall has spent almost all of his career in the AHL. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres stay quiet as free agency opens, only ink AHL defenseman Drew Bagnall for depth

BUFFALO – It didn’t take Sabres fans long to experience some of that suffering general manager Darcy Regier warned could lie ahead.

As free agency opened Friday afternoon and teams began piling up assets, the rebuilding Sabres remained quiet most of the day.

Finally, at about 9:30 p.m., TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported the Sabres had signed AHL defenseman Drew Bagnall to a two-year, two-way contract.

That depth move probably won’t make the team’s anxious fan ... Read the full article

Clarke MacArthur scored two goals in two games following two healthy scratches. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres regular MacArthur making most of first NHL playoff experience with Leafs

TORONTO – This is one of those special stories hockey fans love hearing about and watching this time of year, some of the moments that make the NHL playoffs so fun and memorable.

Consider Clarke MacArthur’s recent exploits.

Following his postseason debut in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal, the Maple Leafs scratched MacArthur twice, no doubt an embarrassing experience for the assistant captain, who played a whopping 403 regular-season games before finally skating ... Read the full article

The Sabres acquired Cody Hodgson at last season's trade deadline. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ recent trade-deadline activity has yielded mixed results

PITTSBURGH – With the NHL trade deadline hitting at 3 p.m. Wednesday, here’s the Buffalo Sabres’ Eastern Conference standing and their activity since 2006:

2006, third place, 83 points

General manager Darcy Regier made no additions, only trading No. 3 goalie Mika Noronen to Vancouver for a second-round pick (current backup goalie Jhonas Enroth). Some argued the inactivity bit the surprising Sabres, who lost four defensemen to injury during their run to the Eastern Conference ... Read the full article

John Scott (32) declares victory after bloodying Toronto’s Frazer McLaren during the first period Thursday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Relentless Sabres roar back to down Leafs in ultra-intense tilt

BUFFALO –For 65 wildly entertaining minutes Thursday, the Sabres and Toronto Maple Leafs fought, traded goals and battled for every inch as they zoomed up and down the ice before a noisy bipartisan crowd of 19,070 fans inside the First Niagara Center.

The Sabres’ 5-4 shootout victory was NHL hockey at its fiercest and most exciting.

“They got their money’s worth tonight,” interim Sabres coach Ron Rolston said about the capacity crowd.

Fittingly, Sabres agitator ... Read the full article

Clarke MacArthur thinks Toronto fans have a right to voice their displeasure. ©2012, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Leafs’ season crumbled quickly

TORONTO – By the third period of the hapless Maple Leafs’ 11th consecutive home loss Thursday, the remaining fans inside the Air Canada Centre – normally some of the NHL’s quietest and most corporate patrons – finally had enough.

Watching the Philadelphia Flyers throttle their Leafs 7-1 put the self-proclaimed “Center of the Hockey Universe” in a baseball mood.

“Let’s go Blue Jays” fans chanted three times, getting pretty loud by the end.

Yikes!... Read the full article

Brad Boyes' acquisition at last year's trade deadline was significant. ©2012, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ recent trade deadline history iffy

BUFFALO – With the NHL trade deadline hitting at 3 p.m. today, here’s the Sabres’ Eastern Conference standing and their activity post-lockout:

2006, third place, 83 points

General manager Darcy Regier made no additions, only trading No. 3 goalie Mika Noronen to Vancouver for a second-round pick. Some argued the inactivity bit the surprising Sabres, who lost four defensemen to injury during their run to the Eastern Conference final. They lost Game 7 with just ... Read the full article