Tonight will be Rasmus Dahlin's 21st NHL game. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Penguins ripe to be beaten by Sabres

PITTSBURGH – If not tonight, then when?

Right now, having won five straight games, the scorching Buffalo Sabres are enjoying their best streak in about nine years. Meanwhile, having lost eight consecutive contests and eight of the last nine (1-7-1), the Penguins are reeling.

So perhaps the Sabres can end their eight-game losing streak to the Penguins tonight at PPG Paints Arena.... Read the full article

Jason Pominville scored Saturday's winner. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Scorching Sabres rank among NHL’s early-season elite

PITTSBURGH – You have to go back nine years to find the last time the Buffalo Sabres ranked among the NHL’s heavyweights like they do right now.

The upstart Sabres haven’t roared out of the gate this fast since the 2009-10 season, when they also earned 26 points in their first 20 outings, their second-best 20-game start of the overtime era.

Entering tonight’s tilt against the Penguins at PPG Paints Arena, the Sabres are enjoying ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner (53) has already scored 13 goals this season. ©2018, Hickling Images

Jeff Skinner could enjoy one of Sabres’ greatest seasons ever

BUFFALO – Jeff Skinner tries to deflect credit for his recent scoring barrage. After all, the slick Sabres winger likes to point out, he has a terrific center in Jack Eichel and goals result from the players operating as a five-man unit.

“The line’s played well, the team’s played well,” Skinner said Thursday inside KeyBank Center. “You’re not going to be able to score unless all five guys are contributing. I think we’ve had that ... Read the full article

The Sabres scratched Patrik Berglund on Tuesday. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Patrik Berglund to return against Jets

BUFFALO – The Sabres’ depth this season offers them flexibility and options they did not enjoy in recent years.

So fresh off Tuesday’s 2-1 win over the Eastern Conference-leading Tampa Bay Lightning, Sabres coach Phil Housley plans to change his lineup for Friday’s road tilt against the Winnipeg Jets.

Patrik Berglund, a healthy scratch Tuesday, will replace Evan Rodrigues at center beside Jason Pominville and Vladimir Sobotka.

“I don’t think as a coaching ... Read the full article

Vladimir Sobotka has scored three goals in 14 games. ©2018, Micheline Veluvolu

Versatile Vladimir Sobotka quietly key contributor to Sabres’ strong start

BUFFALO – Vladimir Sobotka’s arrival here was mostly overlooked. Of course, that isn’t surprising given the Sabres acquired the Czech forward in a blockbuster trade just hours after free agency opened.

The Sabres signed a few new players, including starting goalie Carter Hutton, early on July 1. Then they dished former NHL All-Star Ryan O’Reilly to the St. Louis Blues for three players and a first-round pick that night.

Winger Tage Thompson, perhaps ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart moved to the top line Saturday afternoon. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ line changes create balance

BUFFALO – By now, after 99 games as Sabres coach, Phil Housley knows his group well enough he’s confident making line changes.

Three weeks ago, when Housley put wingers Jeff Skinner and Jason Pominville beside top center Jack Eichel, the Sabres went on a tear. The line quickly morphed into one of the NHL’s best.

“It’s definitely an experience with the group and how they play and … realizing when they are going, to ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart returned to Saturday afternoon's game with some stitches. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres notes: Sam Reinhart ‘dominant’ late in shootout win

BUFFALO – Sam Reinhart and Jack Eichel have been Sabres teammates for 263 games over the last three-plus seasons.

In that time, Reinhart, 23, has compiled 67 goals and 151 points. On two occasions, the winger enjoyed a three-goal outing. In five other games, he recorded three points.

But Saturday afternoon’s 4-3 come-from-behind shootout win against the Vancouver Canucks might’ve been Reinhart’s best performance ever, according to Eichel.

“I thought Reino played awesome,” Eichel said. ... Read the full article

Evan Rodrigues winces in pain in front of Anaheim goalie Ryan Miller on Feb. 6. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Evan Rodrigues wants to keep showcasing offense

BUFFALO – Evan Rodrigues won’t deny the drought is on his mind. While it might not be eating the affable Sabres center up, he’s aware he hasn’t scored a goal yet this season.

“Second game of the year I get robbed on an unbelievable save,” Rodrigues said Friday inside KeyBank Center. “It seems like I can’t get a break since. It’s going to go in one of these days.”

If New York Rangers goalie Henrik ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel has a team-best 17 points. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres’ Jack Eichel scoring points, not worried about goals

BUFFALO – It’s hard to quibble with Jack Eichel’s torrid start. In the last eight games, the slick Sabres captain has compiled a hefty 12 points. Right now, he’s pivoting perhaps the NHL’s best line between scorching wingers Jeff Skinner and Jason Pominville.

Through the first 15 contests, Eichel has scored a team-leading 17 points. At his current pace, he would have 93 points over a full season, the most since Daniel Briere had ... Read the full article

Kyle Okposo said the Sabres started changing in training camp. ©2018, Hickling Images

Sabres generating offense, showcasing maturity in recent weeks

BUFFALO – In Sunday’s 3-1 road loss, the Sabres thoroughly outplayed the New York Rangers, outshooting them a whopping 40-21.

Other than a 19-second span in which the Rangers scored twice, the Sabres held them in check, staying on the offensive and peppering goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

While the Sabres lost for the fourth time in five outings (1-2-2), the game illustrates how much they’ve grown this season. If they keep performing like they did Sunday ... Read the full article