Jimmy Vesey has scored zero goals this season. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Jimmy Vesey happy with ‘reliable’ game despite lack of offense

BUFFALO – Throughout his first 15 outings this season, winger Jimmy Vesey has embraced whatever role the Sabres have cast him in.

Vesey, 26, has spent the bulk of his ice time skating beside center Casey Mittelstadt and killing penalties. That regular spot on a scoring line hasn’t materialized.

“Jimmy coming in here didn’t have a lot of expectations about his role, which is really positive,” Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said.

But Vesey probably expected ... Read the full article

Colin Miller has played 17 games this season. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Marco Scandella’s return makes Colin Miller healthy scratch

BUFFALO – Colin Miller’s stint in the press box likely won’t last long. It wouldn’t be surprising if the Sabres defenseman returns to the lineup Saturday.

But Marco Scandella’s return from a lower-body injury Thursday forced Sabres coach Ralph Krueger to make a tough decision and sit out a regular defenseman.

Miller was the odd man out against for the 5-4 overtime loss to the Carolina Hurricanes.

Right now, the Sabres have eight healthy defensemen. ... Read the full article

Curtis Lazar played in the Calgary organization last season. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres notes: Curtis Lazar enjoys short trip to Buffalo

BUFFALO – The 70- or so mile drive from Rochester to KeyBank Center sure beats trying to get from Stockton, Calif., to Calgary. Just ask Sabres winger Curtis Lazar.

When the Flames would recall Lazar, 24, from the Heat, their AHL affiliate about 1,300 miles away, he would have to fly out of the San Francisco airport.

Stockton is about 83 miles from that airport.

Lazar enjoyed a much easier trip to Buffalo on ... Read the full article

Linus Ullmark knows the Sabres' trip to Sweden is about playing two games. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Linus Ullmark wants to show teammates ‘two wins’ in Sweden

BUFFALO – When the Sabres visit Stockholm later this week, Swedish goalie Linus Ullmark would like to show his teammates something special in the historic city.

“Two wins,” said Ullmark, who backed up Carter Hutton for Saturday’s 1-0 loss to the New York Islanders inside KeyBank Center.

Ullmark’s words underscore that while an in-season trip to Europe might be special, the Sabres plan to take it seriously.

The Sabres, who leave for Sweden today, play ... Read the full article

Jimmy Vesey (13) stands in front of Dallas' Esa Lindell on Oct. 14. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Jimmy Vesey practices, hopes to return Saturday

BUFFALO – So much for Jimmy Vesey being week-to-week. The Sabres winger practiced this morning inside LECOM HarborCenter and would like to return from his upper-body injury Saturday against the New York Islanders.

“I got to see the doctor to get cleared,” Vesey said inside KeyBank Center. “If not Saturday, hopefully soon.”

Sabres coach Ralph Krueger said Vesey is now day-to-day.

Vesey was injured in last Thursday’s 6-2 loss, his first game in New York ... Read the full article

Evan Rodrigues is still looking for his first point this season. ©2019, Janet Schultz

Sabres’ Evan Rodrigues generating confidence after slow start

BUFFALO – In their first 13 games, the Sabres have showcased one of the NHL’s slickest offenses, scoring 43 goals, an average of 3.3 a game.

At their current pace, they would score 271 times over 82 contests, their highest full-season total since 2006-07.

Five Sabres have already scored at least 10 points. Fifteen players have registered at least four points.

Only one Sabre who has played more than two games is still pointless: winger ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt (37) fends off Arizona's Christian Fischer on Monday. ©2019, Hickling Images

Despite loss to Coyotes, Sabres finish October in NHL’s top spot

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s 23rd birthday started off splendidly, with the Sabres captain scoring a power-play goal just minutes in Monday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Arizona Coyotes.

When winger Jeff Skinner made 2-0 later in the first period, it seemed like the Sabres could cruise to their sixth straight home win to open the season.

But the Sabres, the NHL’s biggest early-season surprise, have an alarming penchant for squandering two-goals leads.

It happened Monday ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt's smarts and skills helped the Sabres win Tuesday. ©2019, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

OT play earns Sabres’ Casey Mittelstadt comparison to Nicklas Lidstrom

BUFFALO – Coach Ralph Krueger said the Sabres bench “erupted” long before captain Jack Eichel scored Tuesday’s wild overtime winner.

It started getting loud about 20 seconds earlier, when center Casey Mittelstadt put his head down and pursued San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson as he raced out of the Buffalo zone on a two-on-one.

“It was crazy,” Krueger said following Wednesday’s practice inside KeyBank Center. “I mean, I’m watching the entire bench cheering ... Read the full article

Jason Botterill brought in four new players who have contributed to the Sabres' success. ©2019, Janet Schultz

Jason Botterill says coaches, players have contributed to Sabres’ hot start

BUFFALO – Seven wins in their first nine games have positioned the upstart Sabres among the NHL’s early-season elite.

Right now, having already earned 15 points, they’re tied for first overall and rank first in the Eastern Conference entering tonight’s game against the San Jose Sharks.

Few expected the Sabres, who earned just 16 points over their final 33 outings as they imploded last season, would turn things around so quickly.

The offseason additions – ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt has scored three goals in the last two games. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Casey Mittelstadt, linemates starting to score after slow start

BUFFALO – The Sabres’ torrid start has created lineup stability not felt in these parts in a long time.

Through nine games, the 7-1-1 Sabres have dressed just 21 players, only making one change – Evan Rodrigues for winger Conor Sheary – when an injury forced them.

The lineup has essentially remained intact all season entering tonight’s home game against the San Jose Sharks, right down to the same lines and defense pairs.

Health, of ... Read the full article