Best wishes to RJ

Archive:
Myers

Michal Neuvirth kept the Sabres in Tuesday's game. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

TORONTO – It turns out that nice win three days earlier was an anomaly. The hapless Buffalo Sabres reverted back into a laughingstock in Tuesday’s embarrassing 4-0 loss to the Maple Leafs, getting thoroughly dominated throughout their eighth loss in 10 tries this season.

How ugly was Buffalo’s effort?

The Sabres, three weeks into their 44th season, sprinkled a franchise-low 10 shots on Leafs goalie Jonathan Bernier. The Leafs, meanwhile, pumped 37 shots on Sabres netminder Michal Neuvirth.

“I don’t know who we …

Read More --->
Josh Gorges (4) leads the NHL in blocked shots. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

TORONTO – Take away the character, take away the tenacity, and Buffalo Sabres veteran Josh Gorges becomes a run-of-the-mill defenseman.

The undrafted Gorges has built an unlikely 10-year NHL career by showcasing passion – on and off the ice.

“I have to play with my heart,” Gorges, whose Sabres play the Maple Leafs tonight, said Monday. “I have to play everything I got every shift.”

The 30-year-old believes he couldn’t do either of those wearing the blue-and-white of the hated Toronto Maple Leafs.

Four …

Read More --->
Bryan Trottier has won seven Stanley Cups. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Two men who had spent their entire lives in hockey never met until a chance encounter almost 19 years ago outside Memorial Auditorium.

It was 1995-96, Ted Nolan’s first year as Sabres coach. Hall of Famer Bryan Trottier, an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Penguins, was walking outside the Aud in a snowstorm when Nolan spotted him.

Nolan pulled over and offered a lift.

“We had a five-minute chat,” Trottier, one of Nolan’s new assistant coaches, recalled last week inside the …

Read More --->
Tyler Myers turned a corner last season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Before the defensemen became Sabres teammates, they met about nine years ago, as Tyler Myers was beginning his junior career and Josh Gorges was leaving the Kelowna Rockets for professional hockey.

Gorges couldn’t believe the teenager’s lanky frame.

“He was 6-5, 6-6, but probably only 180 pounds,” Gorges, who will skate beside Myers in tonight’s season opener, recalled earlier this week. “I’m thinking, ‘They’re really high on this kid, he better fill out. He’s pretty skinny.’”

Myers’ talent intrigued Gorges. He …

Read More --->
Brian Gionta talks about being named captain Tuesday. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – For five years, Josh Gorges watched Brian Gionta closely. Gionta’s Stanley Cup ring offered him instant credibility in the Montreal dressing room. But Gorges quickly learned why Gionta won a championship.

Gorges noticed the professionalism Gionta exhibited, the strong habits that made him a leader and respected captain.

“I’ve said this all along, when you’re a young guy coming into a team … who do you look to in the room and say, ‘This is who I got to follow …

Read More --->
Brian Gionta, a candidate to be captain, has worn an 'A' this preseason. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – How close is Ted Nolan to naming a new Sabres captain?

“Uh, real close,” the coach said this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center.

Don’t expect an announcement today, however.

“It hasn’t officially happened yet, but we all know who the leadership is going to be on this team,” he said. “We’ll officially sit down with people. We haven’t talked to anybody yet.”

The Sabres open the season one week from today.

In other news, defenseman Tyler Myers (maintenance day) missed today’s practice. …

Read More --->
Mikhail Grigorenko skates this morning. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Two weeks into training camp, center Mikhail Grigorenko remains the Sabres’ biggest surprise. Two more impressive outings could earn the Russian prospect a roster spot.

“He’s been looking really good,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “He’s strong on the puck. He’s been making some really good plays. So the biggest thing right now is keep seeing him do it.”

Grigorenko has two more preseason opportunities, tonight against the Washington Capitals and Friday in …

Read More --->
Tim Schaller has looked impressive this training camp. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Ted Nolan knew very little about Sabres prospect Tim Schaller prior to training camp. The center hasn’t dazzled the coach, but his play away from the puck has been catching Nolan’s eye.

“I just thought his hockey intelligence was evident to a few of us,” Nolan said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “He kept doing it day after day after day. We just felt that he deserves an opportunity.”

Schaller, an undrafted free agent from Providence College, will …

Read More --->
Brendan Lemieux's father, Claude, enjoyed a long NHL career. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Rookie Brendan Lemieux figures he has a chance. Sure, the Sabres have more experienced players fighting for the two or three open wing spots this training camp. But the 18-year-old believes a place in tonight’s preseason lineup means they want to evaluate him.

“I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have a chance,” Lemieux, the 31st pick in June, said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “I don’t think they would’ve kept me around if they didn’t think …

Read More --->
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 …

Read More --->