Corey Tropp hasn't played yet this season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Corey Tropp, Patrick Kaleta ready to return to struggling Sabres

BUFFALO – The reeling Sabres, winners of just two of their 15 games, need reinforcements badly. Luckily, some aggressive, high-energy players are available.

Corey Tropp, out since breaking his jaw during a Sept. 22 preseason fight, is healed. Meanwhile, Patrick Kaleta has finished serving his 10-game suspension for hitting Columbus’ Jack Johnson in the head Oct. 10.

Sabres coach Ron Rolston said this afternoon following practice inside the First Niagara Center both players looked ... Read the full article

The Sabres traded Thomas Vanek on Sunday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres retained money in Thomas Vanek trade with Isles

BUFFALO – Some interesting new details have emerged about Sunday’s big swap, which sent Sabres co-captain and top scorer Thomas Vanek to the New York Islanders.

The Sabres retained 19.5 percent of Vanek’s $6.5 million salary in the trade, according to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston. They also kept the same portion of his salary cap hit.

Perhaps that’s why the Isles, who sent high-scoring winger Matt Moulson to the Sabres, also parted with a ... Read the full article

Corey Tropp has missed the whole season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Corey Tropp nearing return from broken jaw

BUFFALO – Before Corey Tropp broke his jaw fighting Toronto’s Jamie Devane Sept. 22, the Sabres winger, who tore up his right knee last season, enjoyed some peace of mind.

The few doubts the 24-year-old had about the injury vanished during the preseason.

“I grew that confidence with each day of training camp,” Tropp, who could make his season debut this weekend, said this afternoon following practice inside the First Niagara Center. “‘Oh, ... Read the full article

John Scott had never been suspended before. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ John Scott apologizes for head hit, defends reputation and role

BUFFALO – Sabres tough guy John Scott acknowledges that, yes, almost six minutes into the third period Wednesday, his powerful blindside headshot that concussed winger Loui Eriksson, while not intentional, was illegal.

“It happened pretty fast,” an apologetic Scott said Thursday inside the First Niagara Center after the reeling 1-9-1 Sabres prepared for tonight’s tilt in Florida against the Panthers. “I just thought I was completing a check. But, obviously, I hit his head. It ... Read the full article

Corey Tropp hasn't played yet this regular season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Corey Tropp practicing again, not upset with Jamie Devane

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Corey Tropp holds no grudges against Jamie Devane, the 6-foot-5 tough guy who broke his jaw during a Sept. 22 preseason fight in Toronto.

The scrap ignited a huge brawl and became the talk of hockey world. Sabres enforcer John Scott, who immediately went after Maple Leafs star Phil Kessel, has said Devane shouldn’t have punched Tropp a final time and driven his head into the ice.

But the gritty ... Read the full article

Cody McCormick (8) blocks David Savard's shot Thursday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Johan Larsson replaces struggling Mikhail Grigorenko; Henrik Tallinder hopeful of weekend return

BUFFALO – As expected, the Sabres scratched struggling center Mikhail Grigorenko for Thursday’s 4-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets inside the First Niagara Center.

Rookie Johan Larsson, a scratch Tuesday, pivoted Zemgus Girgensons and Brian Flynn in Grigorenko’s place.

The 19-year-old Grigorenko hasn’t showcased the competitiveness Sabres coach Ron Rolston wants to see.

“He’s got to continue consistency of his compete and his details away from the puck and then, offensively, some confidence there,” ... Read the full article

Johan Larsson has played two games this season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Mikhail Grigorenko to sit tonight for Johan Larsson

BUFFALO – As expected, the Sabres will scratch 19-year-old center Mikhail Grigorenko tonight against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Rookie Johan Larsson, a scratch Tuesday, will pivot Zemgus Girgensons and Brian Flynn inside the First Niagara Center.

Grigorenko, one of 17 pointless Sabres, hasn’t showcased the competitiveness coach Ron Rolston wants to see.

“He’s got to continue consistency of his compete and his details away from the puck and then, offensively, some confidence there,” said Rolston, ... Read the full article

Ville Leino (left) will be replaced by Johan Larsson. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Ville Leino’s cracked rib opens up opportunity for Sabres rookie Johan Larsson

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Ville Leino just can’t stay healthy.

Leino, who played only eight games last season while battling a hip and lung injury, cracked a rib early in Wednesday’s season-opening 2-1 loss in Detroit and is out indefinitely.

The Finn should only miss a couple of weeks, Sabres coach Ron Rolston said Thursday inside the First Niagara Center.

Leino stayed in the game, skating 12:38. But Rolston said the rib “seized up” overnight.... Read the full article

Ville Leino played only eight games last season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Ville Leino out indefinitely with cracked rib

BUFFALO – It keeps getting worse for Sabres winger Ville Leino.

Leino, who played only eight games last season while battling a hip and lung injury, cracked a rib early in Wednesday’s season-opening 2-1 loss in Detroit and is out indefinitely.

The Finn should only miss a couple of weeks, Sabres coach Ron Rolston said this afternoon following practice inside the First Niagara Center.

Leino stayed in the game, skating 12:38. But Rolston said ... Read the full article

Ron Rolston talks after Wednesday's win. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Ron Rolston believes NHL wants coaches to think about enforcer use

BUFFALO – Now, in the wake of Sunday’s mega brawl in Toronto and the fine he received, coaches will think about using their enforcers, Sabres coach Ron Rolston said.

“It’ll definitely be in the mindset,” Rolston, who was fined a reported $10,000 by the NHL for his role, said Wednesday prior to the Sabres’ 3-0 exhibition win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. “They don’t want altercations like that and how it escalated. They are ... Read the full article