BUFFALO – When center Johan Larsson suffered two season-ending dislocations New Year’s Eve, the Sabres quietly experienced a critical blow to their playoff hopes.
BUFFALO – Jack Eichel looked like he would’ve rather been anywhere else. The Sabres center was restless throughout his six-minute chat with the media Monday, mostly giving terse statements and looking around as he stood at a podium.
Eichel, 20, isn’t handling the Sabres’ last-place finish in the Atlantic Division – they also ended 2016-17 an embarrassing 15th in the 16-team Eastern Conference – very well.
“It’s tough,” a seething Eichel said inside KeyBank Center ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – At this point, as the Sabres stumble at the end of another disappointing season, frustration has started overwhelming Ryan O’Reilly.
O’Reilly, 26, has experienced enough losing. The popular center passionately called out himself and his teammates to be better during a brutally honest chat with the media prior to Wednesday’s home finale against the Montreal Canadiens, a 2-1 win.
“I’m sick of losing,” O’Reilly said inside KeyBank Center. “It’s getting exhausting and ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – For the opening 20 minutes of Monday’s 4-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Sabres were downright awful in their worst display of hockey all season. The embarrassing period, punctuated by a disastrous 43-second stretch, could have dramatic repercussions.
There have been a lot of bad periods over the Sabres’ six-season playoff drought. It can be argued Monday’s was the worst.
The upstart Maple Leafs outclassed the sloppy Sabres early before the ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Why now? Why did the Sabres recall top forward prospect Alexander Nylander on Monday of all days, with the Toronto Maple Leafs and his brother, slick rookie William Nylander, in town?
On one hand, the night was unforgettable. NHL debuts are always special, but could you imagine doing it against your brother? On the other hand, the pressure on Alexander Nylander, 19, only increased with his high-scoring sibling in town with the scorching ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Why now? Why did the Sabres recall top forward prospect Alexander Nylander today of all days, with the Toronto Maple Leafs and his brother, slick rookie William Nylander, in town?
On one hand, the night will be unforgettable. NHL debuts are always special, but could you imagine doing it against your brother? On the other hand, the pressure on Alexander Nylander, 19, will only increase.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Thursday, Sabres newcomer C.J. Smith’s first day in the NHL, was “extremely overwhelming,” the rookie winger said.
“I didn’t get to soak it in as much as I wanted to,” Smith said Saturday inside HarborCenter.
Smith signed his entry-level contract in the morning, practiced with his new teammates shortly after and had to take a test online – the finance major is still enrolled at UMass Lowell, where he spent three seasons – ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – For Sabres defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen, his three-game suspension meant he received a short break from the rigors of a long season.
“I got a good rest,” Ristolainen said of his absence. “I worked out well, picked up practices and I’m ready to go. It felt like a month.”
Ristolainen’s ban for hitting Pittsburgh’s Jake Guentzel is over. The workhorse will return for Sunday afternoon’s home tilt against the New York Islanders.
While the ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – As a speedy forward fresh off a 23-goal, 51-point junior season, Sabres newcomer C.J. Smith had plenty of suitors earlier this week after he decided to leave UMass Lowell and turn pro.
So why did Smith, 22, ultimately sign a two-year, entry-level contract with the Sabres? The city certainly played a factor.
“It just kind of fits the person I am,” Smith said Thursday following his first NHL practice. “I grew up in ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – When Sabres coach Dan Bylsma charged Nick Deslauriers with creating some energy, the gritty winger’s first instinct, of course, was to fight.
But these days, those opportunities are scarce. Deslauriers has only fought four times this season. He certainly wasn’t going to find one enjoying a rare shift on the first line with the listless Sabres down three goals Saturday.
“I would’ve loved to get a fight there, but I don’t think ... Read the full article