BUFFALO – Twenty games ago, the upstart Sabres grabbed the top spot in the NHL after winning their 10th straight contest.
At that point, 25 games into the season, the Sabres appeared ahead of schedule. While many observers believed they could possibly contend for a playoff spot, few thought they would be the league’s best team more than a quarter into the campaign.
Fast forward to today, and the Sabres have fallen hard. Yes, they’re ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Over the last week or two, Sabres winger Kyle Okposo has finally started showcasing signs of his old self, playing a heavier, straight-line game.
“He’s going to the net a lot better,” Sabres coach Phil Housley said prior to Saturday’s 5-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning inside KeyBank Center. “I think he’s attacking off the wing and he’s shooting a lot more.”
Not surprisingly, Okposo has started scoring a bit. After enduring ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Forty-four days ago, the first-place Sabres roared into Tampa Bay enjoying a 10-game winning streak. While they lost 5-4 and fell one point behind the Lightning, the end of their raucous run felt like the start of something special.
It seemed like the foes could be battling for the Atlantic Division’s top spot all season.
Well, since that night, the Sabres are 6-9-4. Tampa Bay, meanwhile, is a stunning 17-1-1.
Yes, Tampa Bay ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Considering they endured a seven-year run of futility before their recent resurgence, the Sabres haven’t exactly played a lot of big games lately.
That’s why tonight’s road tilt against the heavyweight Tampa Bay Lightning, which, believe it or not, trails the Sabres for the first time in, umm, a long time, is so meaningful.
The Sabres, who tied a franchise record Tuesday by winning their 10th straight tilt, ranked first in the 31-team ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Over their three-game winning streak, winger Kyle Okposo believes the Sabres have played just a period and a half of “real good” hockey.
“We’ve got some stuff to clean up,” Okposo said after scoring in Tuesday’s 2-1 victory over the Atlantic Division-leading Tampa Bay Lightning. “Obviously, we’re getting two points and good teams find a way to win.”
Yes, believe it or not, the Sabres are finally a good team again. They improved ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Having grown up with a father who played pro hockey, Sabres winger Tage Thompson has a unique understanding of the dues-paying process that accompanies developing into an NHL player.
Before Thompson’s father, Brent, began his coaching career, he played 121 NHL games as a defenseman in the 1990s, mostly with the Los Angeles Kings.
Brent, like his son, shuttled between the big leagues and the minors as a youngster and probably sat out ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Sabres forward Patrik Berglund is a three-time 20-goal scorer with a hefty $4.7 million salary.
But 16 games into his Sabres career, Berglund, 30, has been a disappointment. So far, the Swede he has compiled as many healthy scratches (two) as goals.
Sabres coach Phil Housley said Berglund will be scratched for tonight’s tilt against the Tampa Bay Lightning inside KeyBank Center. He also sat out Oct. 18 in San Jose.
“We got ... Read the full article
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
BUFFALO – Sabres goalie Robin Lehner spent Monday at home with his family monitoring the NHL trade deadline activity on television and radio.
Lehner insisted for weeks he wasn’t worried about his future and wants to stay with the Sabres, something he reiterated Tuesday. But with a wife and two children, “you kind of want to know,” he said.
In the morning, a tweet from someone outside the hockey world – “I don’t know who ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the oddest of Sabres seasons, try figuring this one out: since top center Jack Eichel hurt his ankle Saturday, the NHL’s second-worst team has beaten the league’s two best.
In Tuesday’s 5-3 win against the NHL-leading Tampa Bay Lightning, terrific individual efforts, fine special teams play and a balanced attack buoyed the Sabres.... Read the full article