Kyle Okposo (21) pushes Minnesota's Jared Spurgeon on Wednesday. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Losing streak leaves Sabres searching for answers

BUFFALO – Kyle Okposo looked glum, like a man searching for answers. The Sabres’ struggles have clearly worn on the winger, who hasn’t showcased his normal scoring prowess all season.

“It’s not very much fun to be at the rink right now, and that’s never a good feeling,” Okposo said Thursday. “We just feel like we’re letting a lot of people down and just have to make some changes. As a group, we have to ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel will be with the Sabres at least nine more years. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres, Jack Eichel complete massive contract extension

BUFFALO – The Sabres and center Jack Eichel finalized the largest contract in franchise history Tuesday night, an eight-year extension worth a whopping $80 million.

The average annual value of $10 million puts Eichel, 20, in line with some of the NHL’s other dynamic young stars.

Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid, the youngster picked first overall in 2015, one spot ahead of Eichel, signed an eight-year extension worth $12.5 million a season earlier this ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has one year left in his entry-level deal. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Reports: Sabres, Jack Eichel close to finalizing massive extension

BUFFALO – The Sabres and center Jack Eichel are close to finalizing the largest contract in franchise history, an eight-year extension worth around $80 million, according to multiple reports.

Update: The Sabres have officially announced an eight-year, $80 million extension for Eichel.

Eichel, 20, has one year left on his entry-level deal that is set to pay him $925,000.... Read the full article

Benoit Pouliot signed a one-year contract July 1. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Benoit Pouliot sees Sabres on similar path as Oilers

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Benoit Pouliot knows from firsthand experience a bad NHL team can morph from an also-ran into a contender in a short time.

Three seasons ago, after years of ineptitude, the Edmonton Oilers believed they finally had a playoff-caliber team. But instead of contending, they imploded early, losing 35 of their first 45 games.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel is set to earn $925,000 in 2017-18. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Jack Eichel ‘adamant’ on staying with Sabres, willing to wait for extension

BUFFALO – Sabres center Jack Eichel called it the NHL’s “new game.” Thanks to their dynamic talents, young stars barely out of their teens can earn huge long-term contracts these days.

Eichel, of course, is part of that elite group and will cash in. The Sabres and Eichel’s camp have talked this summer about a lucrative new contract.... Read the full article

Jack Eichel could have a new deal soon. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres GM Jason Botterill optimistic about Jack Eichel’s contract extension

BUFFALO – Sabres general manager Jason Botterill spoke optimistically this morning about young star Jack Eichel signing a contract extension in the near future.

“Our conversations with Jack and the group have gone extremely well,” Botterill said inside HarborCenter following the close of development camp. “We’ll continue those throughout the summer here and stuff to see if we can find a common ground. From our standpoint, we certainly want to get something done, and from ... Read the full article

Benoit Pouliot was a low-risk, high-reward option. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres offer Benoit Pouliot fresh chance

BUFFALO – Benoit Pouliot’s 11th NHL season quickly became his worst. On an upstart Edmonton Oilers team featuring superstar Connor McDavid and loads of other young talent, the veteran winger morphed into a weak link.

The struggles started early in 2016-17 for Pouliot, who signed a one-year, $1.15 million contract with the Sabres on Saturday. On Oct. 16, following one too many penalties, coach Todd McLellan benched him for the final 40 minutes of Edmonton’s ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel just completed a 57-point season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Report: Sabres start contract extension discussions with Jack Eichel

The Buffalo Sabres and Jack Eichel’s camp have started “preliminary discussions” about a contract extension for the star center, according to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun.

The 20-year-old has one year with a base salary of $925,000 left on his entry-level deal. He can’t sign an extension until July 1.

If superstar Connor McDavid’s reported new contract – an eight-year deal with an average annual value of $13.25 million – is any indication, Eichel will break the ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart plays against the Penguins on March 21. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

2017-18 Sabres schedule features early date with Golden Knights

CHICAGO – Two games against the expansion Vegas Golden Knights and a home-and-home series with the Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins in early December are among the highlights of the 82-game 2017-18 Buffalo Sabres schedule the NHL released Thursday.

Some other notable dates, stretches and nuggets:

– The Sabres play the Golden Knights first the first time Oct. 17 in Vegas, the close of a four-game road trip that includes dates with the San Jose ... Read the full article

Timothy Liljegren worked out at the NHL Scouting Combine on June 3. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres could land strong defense prospect at NHL Draft

BUFFALO – Thanks to his famous name and a 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame, NHL Draft prospect Callan Foote has eyes on him whenever he hits the ice.

Foote, 18, usually doesn’t disappoint, either. A defenseman like his father, two-time Stanley Cup winner Adam Foote, he can dominate a game when he utilizes his big body, NHL Central Scouting’s Dave Gregory said. The youngster also possesses a special ability to transition the puck, a key talent in ... Read the full article