ROCHESTER – Physically, Matt Ellis said, he hasn’t felt this good in four or five years. At 34 years old, having just finished his 14th pro season, the popular former Buffalo Sabres forward believes he could keep playing.
“I definitely feel like I got lots left in the tank,” Ellis said Thursday inside the Blue Cross War Memorial.
Still, Ellis understands he could be nearing retirement. This season, his first out of the NHL ... Read the full article
ROCHESTER – It rarely happens. In fact, it might have been a first. Five days after posting a 30-save shutout, the Americans scratched a healthy Andrey Makarov for their next game, Friday’s 5-0 loss to Albany.
Top Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect Linus Ullmark started the home finale. Nathan Lieuwen, just back from his three-week NHL stint, backed up the Swede.
The loquacious Makarov, 22, watched from the stands wearing a suit.
Two years ago, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Chad Johnson often talks about his desire to be a starting goalie, so not surprisingly, the Sabres veteran has already examined the jobs that could be open when he hits unrestricted free agency July 1.
“It’s hard not to,” Johnson said Sunday as the Sabres held their end-of-season meetings. “I try to stay as in the moment (as possible). I’m not going say which teams, but there’s four teams that need goaltenders or ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Sabres goalie Robin Lehner knew his pain threshold would be tested when he returned in mid-January from the high right ankle sprain he suffered opening night.
“Since that day it’s been pain, it’s been swelling after every practice, every game,” Lehner said Sunday as the Sabres held their end-of-season meetings inside the First Niagara Center.
After missing more than three months, Lehner started 20 times, often performing like the No. 1 goalie the ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – When center Ryan O’Reilly joined his new teammates seven months ago, the stench leftover from consecutive 30th-place finishes – the culture of losing, you might call it – still surrounded the Sabres.
“I think you could sense it a bit, for sure,” O’Reilly said this morning as the Sabres held their end-of-season meetings inside the First Niagara Center. “I think there’s a lot of habits, when you look at winning teams, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In his first season as coach, Dan Bylsma has experienced so much excitement surrounding the Sabres he wonders how crazy it would feel if his team becomes a contender again.
The Sabres, of course, will miss the playoffs for the fifth straight season. Still, to a rabid fan base yearning for postseason hockey, the progress the Sabres have made this season – they’ve improved 25 points with newcomers Jack Eichel, Ryan O’Reilly and ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Having traveled around the NHL in a secondary role for years, Sabres goalie Chad Johnson usually gets pegged as a career backup.
Johnson, after all, is just months away from turning 30 years old. Goalies usually grab the No. 1 job by their mid-20s. The Calgary native has played for five teams, including four in the last three years. He had never played more than 27 games in a season before this year.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the span of six months, Sabres goalie Chad Johnson has been a backup, a starter, part of a platoon with rookie Linus Ullmark and a backup again.
For this weekend at least, with Robin Lehner sidelined, Johnson is the Sabres’ top netminder again.
Johnson started Friday’s 3-1 win over the Ottawa Senators inside the First Niagara Center, his fifth straight victory, and will get another nod tonight in Toronto against the Maple ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Just days ago, it appeared Sabres goalie Chad Johnson’s days here were numbered.
In fact, after the backup’s strong 24-save performance in Friday’s 3-1 win in San Jose, the joke became the Sabres should’ve left him there because the Sharks needed a new No. 2 goalie badly.
But the Sharks acquired James Reimer from Toronto on Saturday, the same day St. Louis received Anders Nilsson from Edmonton.
In a matter of hours, the ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After 12 seasons as the face of the Carolina Hurricanes, Eric Staal waived his no-trade clause to join his brother, Marc, in New York for the Rangers’ Stanley Cup-or-bust run. Former Winnipeg Jets captain Andrew Ladd is back in Chicago, where he won a championship with the Blackhawks in 2010.
Thanks to a few days of heavy action, the crop of notable rental forwards available before the 3 p.m. trade deadline – the ... Read the full article