Brian Gionta (12) celebrates his go-ahead goal Saturday afternoon. ©2017, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Wild third-period outburst helps Sabres beat Jets

BUFFALO – If the last-place Sabres go on a three-month tear, roar up the standings and do the unthinkable – that’s secure a playoff spot – remember their offensive outburst late in Saturday afternoon’s thrilling 4-3 come-from-behind win.

Down 3-1 against the Winnipeg Jets and trudging toward their eighth loss in 10 games, the Sabres suddenly exploded for three goals in just 4:42, sending the capacity crowd of 19,070 fans into a frenzy.

The wild ... Read the full article

The Sabres traded Drew Stafford in 2015. ©2017, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Early-season concussions scared Jets’ Drew Stafford

BUFFALO – Drew Stafford’s season started ominously. In a Winnipeg Jets preseason game, the former Sabres winger suffered two injuries from one hit.

At first, Stafford thought the thump from Ottawa’s Michael Blunden had only hurt his shoulder.

“I also didn’t realize it at the time – I felt like I was OK – but I had some concussion symptoms early on then, because I hit my head and my shoulder into the boards,” Stafford ... Read the full article

Robin Lehner will make his 27th start. ©2017, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Robin Lehner to start against Jets

BUFFALO – After sitting out two straight games, Sabre goalie Robin Lehner will make his 27th start of the season this afternoon against the Winnipeg Jets.

Backup Anders Nilsson played the last two contests.

The Sabres will make one other lineup change, inserting defenseman Justin Falk, a healthy scratch for Thursday’s 4-3 overtime loss in Chicago, for Taylor Fedun, coach Dan Bylsma said.

Update: Defenseman Josh Gorges, who’s been battling a hip problem, ... Read the full article

Anders Nilsson has started the last two games. ©2017, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Anders Nilsson impressive in limited action

BUFFALO – Dan Bylsma’s knowledge of Anders Nilsson was limited before the Sabres acquired the goalie in July. Sure, the team did its due diligence on the Swede. But the coach mostly knew about the backup from watching him years ago.

“I saw him as a younger goalie in the Islanders organization playing against him,” Bylsma said Friday after the Sabres prepared for this afternoon’s tilt against the Winnipeg Jets at KeyBank Center. “I ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching scored 8:37 into his NHL debut. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Early Hudson Fasching goal helps Sabres beat Jets

BUFFALO – Prior to his NHL debut Saturday afternoon, Sabres winger Hudson Fasching told his family and friends he wouldn’t know what to do if he scored a goal in his first game.

The affable Fasching, who always seems to be bursting with energy, joked he might “blackout on adrenaline.”

“That was almost the case,” a smiling Fasching said after scoring a nifty goal 8:37 into the Sabres’ exciting 3-2 comeback win against the Winnipeg ... Read the full article

Former Sabres defenseman Tyler Myers (57) skates past Paul Byron last season. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres Tyler Myers, Drew Stafford happy with Jets

BUFFALO – Drew Stafford called it a “healthy separation.” The Winnipeg Jets winger said he has no ill will toward anyone here. He enjoyed his nine-year Sabres career.

As a struggling veteran months away from free agency last year, Stafford knew the rebuilding Sabres would trade him. Sure enough, Stafford, 30, was dealt with defenseman Tyler Myers on Feb. 11, 2015 in the blockbuster that brought defenseman Zach Bogosian and winger Evander Kane to the ... Read the full article

Drew Stafford spent nine seasons with the Sabres. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Drew Stafford happy with Jets, has fond Sabres memories

BUFFALO – Drew Stafford called it a “healthy separation.” The Winnipeg Jets winger said he has no ill will toward anyone here. He enjoyed his nine-year Sabres career.

As a struggling veteran months away from free agency last year, Stafford knew the rebuilding Sabres would trade him. Sure enough, Stafford, 30, was dealt Feb. 11, 2015 in the blockbuster that brought defenseman Zach Bogosian and winger Evander Kane to the Sabres.

“I was kind of ... Read the full article

Sabres defenseman Casey Nelson spent three years in college. ©2016, Andy Visockis, Minnesota State Athletics

Casey Nelson defied odds to reach Sabres

BUFFALO – Barely two years ago, Casey Nelson wasn’t ready for NCAA hockey. After some notable gaffes early in his freshman season, the newest Sabres defenseman got yanked from the lineup.

“His first couple games in college hockey were tough,” said Mike Hastings, who coached Nelson three seasons at Minnesota State University.

Nelson, 23, sat out a chunk of his first season before finally earning regular duty late in the year.

“I kind of got ... Read the full article

Evander Kane played four seasons in Winnipeg. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Evander Kane downplays return to Winnipeg

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Evander Kane, understandably, has been tight-lipped about his return to Winnipeg, where he spent four tumultuous seasons with the Jets.

Beyond offering some clichés, Kane, 24, hasn’t said much about this afternoon’s tilt in Winnipeg, his first appearance at the MTS Centre since the Jets traded him in a blockbuster deal Feb. 11.

“Just another game,” Kane told reporters Saturday in Winnipeg.

But Sabres coach Dan Bylsma knows how much ... Read the full article

David Leggio spent two seasons in Rochester. ©2015, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Williamsville’s David Leggio to attend Jets camp on tryout

Williamsville native David Leggio will attend Winnipeg Jets training camp next month on a professional tryout, the goalie’s agent, Brian Bartlett, told the Times Herald.

Despite a strong body of work in the AHL, Leggio, 31, is still unsigned for the 2015-16 season. He spent last season with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and Portland Pirates.

He struggled with Bridgeport, the New York Islanders’ top affiliate, posting a 3.93 goals-against average and a .861 save percentage ... Read the full article