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Miller

Jhonas Enroth has become the Sabres' No. 1 goalie. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Following a one-game rest, Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth will likely start tonight against the Colorado Avalanche, his 11th nod in the last 13 contests and 22nd appearance overall this season.

At his current pace, the 26-year-old would play 52 times. But given the frequency of his recent action, it’s not crazy to think the diminutive Swede, one of the NHL’s smallest netminders at 5-foot-10 and 166 pounds, could hit the prestigious 60-game mark.

Enroth has never played more than 28 …

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Chris Stewart has struggled this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Instead of walking into the dressing room following a long skate Tuesday morning, struggling Sabres winger Chris Stewart veered off and undressed somewhere else.

A few minutes later, a staff member wheeled in Stewart’s equipment on a shopping cart and placed it in his locker.

Clearly, Stewart, a healthy scratch for the Sabres’ 1-0 win against the Los Angeles Kings, wasn’t in the mood to discuss his benching.

“All players have to play to the best of their ability,” Sabres coach …

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Chris Stewart scores Nov. 26, his second goal this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Less than two weeks ago, Chris Stewart appeared to turn a corner. The 6-foot-2, 231-pound Sabres winger scored two nifty breakaway goals during a three-game stretch, just his second and third goals this season.

But Stewart has done little since then, so Sabres coach Ted Nolan will make the 27-year-old a healthy scratch for tonight’s game against the Los Angeles Kings inside the First Niagara Center.

“All players have to play to the best of their ability,” Nolan said this …

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Steve Ott joined the Blues in February. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Part of Steve Ott will always remain with the Sabres. The gritty 32-year-old quickly became one of the city’s most popular athletes during his two-year tenure, his blue-collar style resonating in a hardworking fan base.

“I like to think that I was a part of that organization for the right reasons,” Ott, whose St. Louis Blues host the Sabres tonight, said by phone Monday morning. “When you wear a sweater of a team, it will always hold a piece …

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Randy Moller played 126 games with the Sabres from 1992-94. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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With play-by-play man Randy Moller and the Florida Panthers in town, I thought I’d flashback to one of my favorite stories of the last five years, Moller talking about his, shall we say unique, style of calling a goal. This story ran April 1, 2010. Give it a read. I’ve posted plenty of audio below.

BUFFALO – One minute, 51 seconds into the Sabres’ 6-2 win Wednesday, Florida Panthers winger Jeff Taffe grabbed a pass from Steve MacIntyre in the slot …

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Anaheim's William Karlsson scores before the Sabres' Mike Weber can reach him Monday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Three straight losses. Two goal scorers. One hapless Sabres team barreling toward another lottery pick.

Five days into the new campaign, the Sabres, the NHL’s laughingstock last season, look just as bad as the wretched 2013-14 outfit that finished 30th overall.

Monday afternoon’s embarrassing 5-1 loss to the powerhouse Anaheim Ducks might rank as one of the ugliest home losses in team history.

The Western Conference power throttled the Sabres from the get-go, outshooting them 17-3 in the first period and …

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Michal Neuvirth only played two games with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – They’ve been friends for years. Sabres goalies Jhonas Enroth and Michal Neuvirth grew up facing each other overseas. When their careers shifted to North America, they kept competing all the way to the NHL.

These days, the 26-year-olds are challenging for the same spot, the No. 1 goalie position.

“It’s Jhonas and Neuvirth’s time,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said Friday inside the First Niagara Center following the first session of training camp.

The competition should be a friendly one. The two …

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Chris Stewart has played only five games with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – When Chris Stewart’s disappointing 15-goal season ended in April, the Sabres winger decided to stay put for the summer. Instead of returning home to Toronto, Stewart settled in a suburb and began preparing for what he called “another biggest season of my career.”

“I’ve been saying (that) for the last three, four years now,” Stewart, who hasn’t cracked the 20-goal mark since 2010-11, said last week after skating inside the Riverside Ice Rink.

This time, it’s true. Stewart, 27, is …

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Zemgus Girgensons spent all last season with the Sabres. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Some experts are already predicting the Sabres, a team three months removed from the worst NHL season in recent memory, will be legitimate Stanley Cup contenders in a few years.

Why? Their prospect pool might be the deepest in hockey.

Seven first-round picks are participating in the team’s development camp this week. Seven of the 41 prospects played in the NHL last season, including center Zemgus Girgensons, who spent the entire campaign with the Sabres.

Fans can get their first glimpses …

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Tim Murray (left) wants to sign veterans to support youngsters like Sam Reinhart. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – The Sabres have a pretty simple free agency plan. The rebuilding club wants to add some respected veterans, preferably skilled ones who can mentor the team’s youngsters and are willing to take a short term, perhaps just a year or two.

Yes, the Sabres need to add salary badly when the market opens at noon today. After all, they’re a stunning $20,580,834 under the floor. But reaching that mark, a touchy subject for general manager Tim Murray, isn’t the …

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