Tyler Ennis played the wing Thursday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres turn to Tyler Ennis for center help

BUFFALO – On Friday, coach Ron Rolston said the Sabres “would look at all options” to find another center, even if it meant moving someone over from the wing.

Sure enough, Tyler Ennis was centering Marcus Foligno and Drew Stafford this morning as the Sabres prepared for tonight’s preseason contest against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the First Niagara Center.

Where does Rolston see Ennis winding up eventually, center or wing? The 23-year-old has ... Read the full article

Joel Armia skates this morning. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Joel Armia set for home debut tonight

BUFFALO – The hype has been building since slick Finnish winger Joel Armia was selected 16th overall in 2011. In the 20-year-old, the Sabres possess a prospect so talented many believe he could crack the NHL right away.

Yet few have seen Armia, who spent the last three seasons playing at home in SM-liiga, up close.

Who exactly is this guy?

Fans will find out tonight, when Armia makes his Buffalo debut in the ... Read the full article

Jamie McBain had only one goal and eight points last season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Jamie McBain looking for fresh start after Hurricanes career fizzled

BUFFALO – Jamie McBain disputes his former general manager’s belief he reported to training camp out of shape last season.

The new Sabres defenseman acknowledged Tuesday that workouts “kind of slipped away from me a little bit” during the lockout. But McBain had played briefly in Finland and felt ready for an abbreviated season with the Carolina Hurricanes following the work stoppage.

“My on-ice conditioning was just fine,” said McBain, who could face the Hurricanes ... Read the full article

Corey Tropp only played six games last season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Tonight’s game more than meaningless exhibition for Sabres’ Corey Tropp

BUFFALO – Seventeen months after Corey Tropp played his last NHL game, the 24-year-old Sabres winger will return to the lineup tonight in Columbus.

Yes, it’s just an exhibition contest. But for Tropp, who suffered ligament damage in his right knee playing for Rochester opening night last season, it’s more than a preseason tilt.

Tropp’s back in the NHL.

“I’d be lying to you if I told you when I finished the season two ... Read the full article

The Sabres picked Rasmus Ristolainen eighth overall in June. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Last four Sabres No. 1 picks to play tonight; Rasmus Ristolainen set for debut

BUFFALO – Four No. 1 picks from the last two years, including both 2013 selections, defensemen Rasmus Ristolainen and Nikita Zadorov, will skate for the Sabres in tonight’s preseason opener in Montreal.

Expect to see the rebuilding Sabres showcase plenty of youth throughout the seven-game exhibition schedule, coach Ron Rolston said this morning inside the First Niagara Center.

“There’s going to be a lot of opportunity for those players, and they’re going to get a ... Read the full article

Ron Rolston took over as coach on Feb. 20. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres facing plenty of questions as first training camp under Ron Rolston begins

BUFFALO – The Sabres convene for training camp physicals today inside the First Niagara Center, for better or worse, almost the same team that ended a disappointing, 11th-place season 137 days ago.

Other than a busy draft day and reacquiring 34-year-old defenseman Henrik Tallinder, the rebuilding club remained quiet throughout the summer.

Starting goalie Ryan Miller and leading scorer Thomas Vanek, two veteran stars rumored to be on the trading block, ... Read the full article

Mikhail Grigorenko played 25 NHL games last season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres youngster Mikhail Grigorenko ineligible for NHL Prospect Tournament

BUFFALO – Prospect Mikhail Grigorenko is ineligible for the 2013 NHL Prospect Tournament “because of the number of NHL games he was on the Sabres’ roster” last season, the team announced this afternoon, a day before play begins in Traverse City, Mich.

Grigorenko, who made 25 NHL appearances as a rookie in 2012-13, was arguably the biggest name on the 24-man roster the Sabres released for the eight-team tournament last month.

Two other youngsters on ... Read the full article

Thomas Vanek and the Sabres will have 70 games aired on MSG next season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres to appear on NBC 12 times in 2013-14; Traverse City roster announced

BUFFALO – MSG will televise 70 Sabres games in 2013-14, while NBC or NBC Sports Network will broadcast the other 12, the team announced today.

Ten games will air on NBC Sports Network. The other two will air on NBC or NBC Sports Network as part of the flex schedule.

The scheduled NBC games:

  • Oct. 2 at Detroit, 8:00 (NBCSN)
  • Oct. 8 vs. Tampa Bay, 7:30 (NBCSN)
  • Oct. 14 vs. Minnesota, 7:30 (NBCSN)
  • Oct.
... Read the full article
Darcy Regier talks about the Sabres' offseason news Friday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres could still have Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek in fold when training camp opens

BUFFALO – With each passing day, general manager Darcy Regier acknowledged, it becomes more likely starting goalie Ryan Miller and slick winger Thomas Vanek will still be with the Sabres when training camp starts in September.

Regier has said both stars, whose contracts expire after next season, could be dealt from the rebuilding Sabres. He said he’s had some “discussions regarding both those players” with other teams.

“The nature of this business as you move ... Read the full article

A knee injury ended Brayden McNabb's season March 23. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Brayden McNabb ready to grab spot on crowded blue line

BUFFALO – The most experienced defense prospect participating in the Sabres’ summer development camp might also have the most to prove.

As a rookie in 2011-12, Brayden McNabb impressed from the get-go, earning his first NHL promotion in late November and playing 25 total games with the Sabres.

Less than two years later, the 22-year-old has almost become an afterthought.

When the NHL season started in January, McNabb, who struggled a bit with Rochester last ... Read the full article