MONTREAL – Centers are perhaps the most precious commodity in hockey, and the Buffalo Sabres had built up an impressive stockpile of them before they selected Matthew Savoie ninth overall, Noah Ostlund 16th and Jiri Kulich 28th at the NHL Draft on Thursday.
In 18-year-old youngsters, the Sabres picked three of the most talented pivots in the draft and added to perhaps the league’s deepest group.
In the NHL, the Sabres have skilled centers Dylan ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – The original plan called for a recording of Malcolm Subban singing the U.S. national anthem to be played before Friday’s season finale. But then the goalie’s Sabres teammates and some staff members encouraged him to do it live.
“It was awesome,” a smiling Subban said Saturday as the Sabres cleaned out their lockers and held end-of-season meetings. “I was, like, so nervous before. Like, I couldn’t even eat lunch. Oh yeah, I was ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Coach Don Granato said he can’t simply tell his players about the Sabres’ history. They need to see and experience it for themselves.
That’s why Granato believes the Sabres’ season-long celebration of legendary play-by-play man Rick Jeanneret, who called his final game Friday, will have a lasting effect for his young team.
“Having everybody celebrate RJ this season meant they celebrated 50 years of Sabre hockey and the history,” Granato said prior to ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Opponents detest Jeff Skinner, one of the NHL’s foremost pests. The Sabres winger has a knack for getting under their skin, whether it be by running his mouth, relentlessly hounding the puck or scoring goals.
“He’s one of my best friends and I’m pretty sure I would hate his guts on the other side,” Sabres winger Casey Mittelstadt said after Skinner agitated the New York Islanders and scored late in Saturday afternoon’s ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Casey Mittelstadt likes to extract positives from difficult experiences. So the Sabres forward believes a trying, injury-riddled season in which he has missed 42 games and scored just four goals has also featured personal growth.
Recovering from two upper-body injuries has helped him develop patience – “That’s probably one of the things I struggled with most, I’m pretty impatient,” he said – and evolve as a person.
Mittelstadt, 23, had to do something ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In a few weeks, after his dizzying year ends, Sabres rookie Owen Power might finally have a chance to sit back and enjoy a little time to himself.
Power, 19, had endured a grueling season prior to signing his entry-level NHL contract, leaving college to represent Team Canada at the Olympics more than 6,500 miles away in Beijing and at the World Junior Championship in Edmonton.
Even in the NHL, Power still has ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In Friday’s practice, Sabres coach Don Granato changed every forward line, tinkering with trios that have recently developed chemistry and enjoyed success.
Granato often explains how he wants his lineup to become interchangeable. While he showcases more patience than most coaches – lines and defense pairs sometimes stay intact for weeks – he’s not afraid to experiment within games or try new things.
So for tonight’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers at KeyBank ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Since he arrived in the NHL three years ago, the knock on Sabres winger Victor Olofsson has been he’s too one-dimensional, just a shooter who mostly scores power-play goals.
Olofsson, 26, possesses a lethal shot, and he has often utilized his ultra-quick release to pile up power-play goals from the circle.
Over his first 106 NHL games entering this season, Olofsson scored 20 of his 35 goals (57 percent) on the man advantage. ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Sabres coach Don Granato, a veteran of international tournaments, has been named an assistant coach for Team USA’s entry at the upcoming World Championship in Finland, the team announced this afternoon.
Granato, 54, will be on a staff that includes head coach David Quinn and assistants Jeff Blashill, Mike Hastings and Mike King.
The tournament begins May 13.
... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In his three-year NHL career, Sabres winger Victor Olofsson has probably never been so wide open.
As the puck rimmed around the left boards with Tuesday’s game tied late, it appeared to be leaving the Carolina Hurricanes zone. But Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin said he “fake pressured” one of the Hurricanes, forcing him to move the puck. Dahlin then batted it down inside the blue line before quickly spotting Olofsson in the right ... Read the full article