BUFFALO – Having earned 20 of a possible 22 points when leading after two periods entering Tuesday, the odds of the Sabres imploding against the last-place Florida Panthers seemed slim.
Ten weeks into the season, the Sabres had zero regulation losses – a terrific 9-0-2 mark – when up after 40 minutes.
So Tuesday’s 5-2 setback to the Panthers, a game the Sabres led 2-1 at the beginning of the third period, might be their ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Zach Bogosian certainly earned his maintenance day today. In the third period of Thursday’s 3-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes, the Sabres defenseman played a whopping 11 minutes, 13 seconds.
Bogosian stayed on the ice for the final 2:42 of the tilt as the Coyotes pulled goalie Darcy Kuemper and pushed to tie the game. Overall, Bogosian played 25 minutes, 10 seconds in the Sabres’ second consecutive victory.
“He looked like a man ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After a particularly frustrating power play in Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime win, Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin showcased some rare emotion, slamming his stick on the ice before snapping it.
“When you can’t score, it’s pretty tough,” Dahlin said this afternoon inside KeyBank Center. “Bad sticks, I wanted a new one so I broke it.”
After Dahlin’s little outburst, Sabres defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen joked with the rookie on the bench.
While Dahlin couldn’t remember what ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – We’d seen contests like Tuesday’s come-from-behind 4-3 victory against the Los Angeles Kings from the Sabres before. They played, oh, about eight of them during their thrilling 10-game winning streak last month.
After a nondescript or subpar opening 40 minutes or so, the Sabres often roar back late and win in overtime or a shootout.
It’s a risky way to win games, for sure, but those type of triumphs briefly elevated them to ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After starting slowly this season, Sabres winger Kyle Okposo found a groove around late October, scoring five goals and 12 points over an 18-game stretch.
Not surprisingly, Okposo’s production coincided with the Sabres’ surge to the top of the NHL. The veteran usually skates on the second or third line, so his offense provided some critical secondary scoring.
Then like most of the Sabres, Okposo, 30, suddenly stopped scoring. Since their 10-game winning ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After an upper-body injury forced him to miss Saturday afternoon’s 6-2 home loss to Philadelphia, Sabres goalie Carter Hutton was back practicing this morning inside HarborCenter.
Coach Phil Housley said he “definitely” expects his No. 1 netminder to return this week. The Sabres host Los Angeles on Tuesday and Arizona on Thursday before playing road games Saturday and Sunday.
“It was good to see him back battling,” Housley said inside KeyBank Center. “He ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Every once in a while a prospect like Sabres defenseman Lawrence Pilut comes along. After a short apprenticeship in the AHL – maybe just a few months or less – he arrives in the NHL and stays for good.
For as much as the Sabres and other teams stress development and paying dues, some guys are just ready for the big leagues right away.
Pilut, 22, is just four games into his career. ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – When the puck slid back to the point late in Tuesday’s second period, Sabres winger Sam Reinhart moved from the left circle into the slot and began jockeying for position with Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Ron Hainsey.
As defensemen Nathan Beaulieu and Rasmus Ristolainen passed the puck to each other, Reinhart kept battling Hainsey, moving from one side to the other.
Finally, with Reinhart still in the slot and winger Jeff Skinner behind ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In about 10 minutes Tuesday, captain Jack Eichel scored twice during a wild third period, giving the Sabres a short-lived lead and equaling his goal output from the previous 25 games.
Eichel, 22, has quietly enjoyed a terrific season, compiling 27 assists and 34 points in the first 29 contests.
At his current pace, the slick center would have 76 assists and 94 points over 82 games, the Sabres’ most prolific offensive ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Instead of being relied upon to produce offense, ex-Sabres winger Tyler Ennis is now a fourth-liner.
Sure, Ennis, 29, skates on the Toronto Maple Leafs’ second power-play unit. The former first-round pick even started the season on the No. 1 line beside center Auston Matthews and Patrick Marleau.
But Ennis is no longer the ultra-slick presence from his early days. The concussions he suffered in his final seasons with the Sabres helped stymie ... Read the full article