Jeff Skinner hadn't scored a goal since Dec. 2. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Jeff Skinner scores goal against Penguins, ends long slump

PITTSBURGH – After ending his career-long 23-game goal drought, Buffalo Sabres winger Jeff Skinner said he did not really feel a sense of relief.

“I felt pretty good,” Skinner said after scoring 5:39 into the third period of Saturday afternoon’s 5-2 win over the Penguins. “I don’t know. I feel like I scored a few times and usually it feels pretty good. I don’t know.

“You can use ‘relief,’ I guess, if that sort of ... Read the full article

Evan Rodrigues has started producing some offense ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Evan Rodrigues stepping up game after trade request

BUFFALO – After playing 10 straight games, Sabres forward Evan Rodrigues will likely be scratched this afternoon against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Sabres winger Michael Frolik has recovered from a nasty bout with the flu and is set to return, meaning one forward must sit out.

Based on Friday’s practice lines, Rodrigues will be a healthy scratch for the first time since Jan. 28.

Rodrigues, 26, sat out regularly over the first two months, often serving ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel and the Sabres mobbed Victor Olofsson following Thursday's overtime goal. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Victor Olofsson returns in grand fashion, leads Sabres to overtime win

BUFFALO – After missing six weeks of action, Sabres winger Victor Olofsson needed some time to adjust.

For the first two periods of Thursday’s 4-3 overtime win against the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Swedish rookie generated little offense.

“I got a little rust in my game there,” Olofsson said after scoring two goals, including the winner 2:44 into overtime.

By the end of Thursday’s thrilling come-from-behind victory, Olofsson kept showcasing the talents – his quick ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner has an 18-game goal drought. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Jeff Skinner battling marathon slump, still playing down lineup

BUFFALO – At worst, you figured Sabres winger Jeff Skinner would score 25 or 30 goals this season. But having performed so dynamically most of last year, hitting 35 or even 40 again seemed possible.

Skinner and top Sabres captain Jack Eichel formed a lethal duo a year ago. For the first time in his career, Skinner, 27, had an elite center feeding him the puck, and he responded by scoring 40 goals.

When ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner and the Sabres struggled for 40 minutes Thursday. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres suffer awful shootout loss to hapless Red Wings

BUFFALO – The 4-3 shootout loss was even hard for Ralph Krueger to spin. The coach explained the Sabres’ inability to convert their chances doomed them Thursday against the hapless Detroit Red Wings. He insisted his reeling team’s effort remained high.

But there’s no getting around the Sabres suffered a humiliating defeat. The Red Wings, the NHL’s worst team, are on pace for the worst season since the NHL implemented the salary cap in 2005.... Read the full article

Jimmy Vesey has been a strong checker for the Sabres. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Jimmy Vesey focused on Sabres, not thinking about trade deadline

BUFFALO – The left winger beside top center Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart has become a revolving-door position since Victor Olofsson suffered a lower-body injury last month.

Rookie Rasmus Asplund started off subbing for Olofsson. Jimmy Vesey took a brief turn before Zemgus Girgensons enjoyed the longest run.

Last week, Evan Rodrigues and Jeff Skinner, Eichel’s partner most of last season, moved up for about a period.

Now, Vesey, 26, is back on the No. ... Read the full article

Sabres goalie Carter Hutton is congratulated by Jack Eichel (9) and Marcus Johnasson (90) following Saturday afternoon's win. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Jack Eichel’s dynamic play clinches overtime win for Sabres

BUFFALO – For 60 minutes against the Columbus Blue Jackets, Sabres captain Jack Eichel blended in, generating little offense against one of the NHL’s stingiest teams.

When overtime began Saturday afternoon, Eichel hadn’t registered a shot on goal, a rarity during a dynamic season in which he has morphed into a superstar.

“I thought a little bit there he was fighting it,” goalie Carter Hutton said after Eichel’s goal 36 seconds into overtime secured a ... Read the full article

The Sabres acquired Michael Frolik on Jan. 2. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres GM Jason Botterill would like to add forward before trade deadline

BUFFALO – Even after acquiring Michael Frolik earlier this month, Sabres general manager Jason Botterill would like to add another forward before the Feb. 24 trade deadline.

The Sabres’ depth up front, of course, was weak before Vladimir Sobotka and Tage Thompson both suffered season-ending injuries in November.

Right now, Victor Olofsson is week-to-week with a lower-body injury. Evan Rodrigues has been a huge disappointment, scoring just two goals and often sitting out as a ... Read the full article

Curtis Lazar has enjoyed regular duty. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Curtis Lazar earning keep with Sabres: ‘I am an NHL player’

BUFFALO – In the waning minutes of Tuesday’s 4-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights, Sabres center Curtis Lazar couldn’t get off the ice.

Lazar’s marathon shift began with 2:18 left in the third period and the Sabres clinging to a one-goal lead. Following an icing and a timeout, the play kept going and going as the Golden Knights pressed with the extra attacker.

“We knew what we had to do,” Lazar said following Wednesday’s ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart (23) celebrates his second-period goal Saturday afternoon. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Sam Reinhart’s presence in circle boosting power play

BUFFALO – Long before he developed into a terrific net-front presence in the NHL, Sabres winger Sam Reinhart operated from the circle on the power play.

“It’s a pretty normal spot,” Reinhart said after scoring a power-play goal from the left circle in Saturday afternoon’s 6-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks inside KeyBank Center.

After moving back there earlier this month, Reinhart has looked comfortable, scoring on two one-timers.

Those goals, believe it or not, ... Read the full article