BUFFALO – By the final minutes of Saturday afternoon’s 3-2 win, most of the crowd of 17,731 had seen enough of the Sabres and departed KeyBank Center.
It was nothing against them. The spirited fans enjoyed the Sabres’ second straight victory – it was one of the noisiest contests this season – but they had somewhere to go.
The Bills’ AFC Wild Card game against the Houston Texans would be starting soon, and fans wanted ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In his five-year NHL career, Sabres winger Conor Sheary said he had never experienced being a healthy scratch until last month.
“That was something different for me,” said Sheary, who sat out three times over a six-game stretch.
But in his first half season as Sabres coach, Ralph Krueger has established he’s willing to scratch anyone.
Krueger benched forward Evan Rodrigues on opening night and has kept sitting him out for months. In ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Halfway through Tuesday’s shocking 6-4 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning, Sabres captain Jack Eichel showcased why he might be underutilized as a penalty killer.
With the Sabres up 3-1, Eichel pounced on a loose puck in his own zone and zoomed down the ice. When the slick center hit the right circle, he undressed defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk before skating through the slot and backhanding a shot by goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy for his ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Curtis Lazar loves playing center. After thriving back at his natural position a year ago with the Stockton Heat, the Calgary Flames’ AHL affiliate, he talked to the Sabres during free agency about remaining there.
“All my conversations during the summer said I’d be down the middle, and then I come to camp and played strictly wing,” said Lazar, who signed a one-year, $700,000 contract July 1. “I’m honestly fine with whatever. I ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Long before the Sabres signed him to a two-way contract Monday, Dalton Smith seemed destined to reach the NHL.
In 2010, the Columbus Blue Jackets drafted the 6-foot-2, 210-pound winger 34th overall. Second-round picks, of course, are expected to make the big leagues.
But Smith’s road to the NHL would be long and arduous.
His stint as a bonafide prospect was short. After spending two seasons with Columbus’ AHL affiliate, he started bouncing ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Forget that Jeff Skinner hadn’t scored in 11 games before suffering an upper-body injury Friday. Forget that after enjoying his first 40-goal campaign, the Sabres winger has only produced 11 goals in 39 contests this season.
Skinner, who will be sidelined three to four weeks, the Sabres announced Saturday, can be a lethal scorer. In his last few outings, he channeled his 2018-19 form, showcasing the tenacious style that helped make him ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – The Sabres have a way of making any recent progress quickly feel like a distant memory.
For the first two weeks of December, they channeled some of their early-season form, shaking off an awful November swoon and moving back into a playoff spot in the Atlantic Division.
Now, having dropped five of their last six games (1-4-1), they’re struggling again.
To make matters worse, in addition to losing 3-0 to the heavyweight Boston ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Seven years ago, Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe had no idea he would be named captain of Team USA’s entry at the World Junior Championship.
The team, after all, had some returning players. McCabe, then 19, was participating in his first tournament.
“It was one I was surprised about because I was a first-year player,” McCabe said prior to Friday’s 3-0 loss to the Boston Bruins at KeyBank Center. “But I took it with ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Even during the opening weeks of the season, as Marcus Johansson scored goals and solidified himself as the Sabres’ No. 2 center, his play irked him.
“I didn’t feel like myself with the puck and stuff like that,” said Johansson, who scored four goals and seven points in the first nine games. “I mean, sometimes you still get points and the team wins. You kind of don’t think about it as much.”
These ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Thursday was “Aud Night” at KeyBank Center, a special 50th anniversary promotion that celebrated the Sabres’ first home and the 1980s throughout their entertaining 4-3 win over the Nashville Predators.
In addition to giving out Memorial Auditorium shirts – the Sabres laid out gold, red, blue and orange ones on the seats to match the old building’s unique look – alumni attended and the Sabres sported their special white anniversary jerseys.
“It adds ... Read the full article