John Scott (right) fights George Parros during the second period Sunday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Brennan replaces Sekera on banged-up blue line

BUFFALO – A bruised foot sidelined Sabres defenseman Andrej Sekera for Sunday afternoon’s 4-3 loss to the Florida Panthers. Rookie T.J. Brennan replaced him, making his second appearance this season.

Sekera blocked Alexei Emelin’s shot shortly into his first shift Saturday, went to the dressing room and returned for several shifts before leaving the Sabres’ 6-1 loss in Montreal again after the first period.

Ruff hopes it’s a short-term injury.

“He took a pretty hard ... Read the full article

T.J. Brennan will replace Andrej Sekera. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Injured Sekera out, Brennan in for Sabres

BUFFALO – Sabres defenseman Andrej Sekera will miss this afternoon’s tilt against the Florida Panthers after bruising his foot Saturday, coach Lindy Ruff said. Rookie T.J. Brennan will replace him.

Sekera blocked Alexei Emelin’s shot shortly into his first shift, went to the dressing room and returned for several shifts before leaving the Sabres’ 6-1 loss in Montreal again after the first period.

Ruff hopes it’s a short-term injury.

“He took a pretty hard shot,” ... Read the full article

Andrej Sekera hurt his foot early today. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sekera’s injury isn’t serious; Sabres’ blue line getting thin

Defenseman Andrej Sekera bruised his foot early in the Buffalo Sabres’ 6-1 loss to the Canadiens this afternoon and will be re-evaluated Sunday, coach Lindy Ruff told reporters in Montreal.

“It doesn’t look like it should be too long,” Ruff said.

He added: “He tried to gut it out.”

Sekera blocked Alexei Emelin’s shot shortly into his first shift, went to the dressing room and returned for several shifts before leaving again after the ... Read the full article

Patrick Rissmiller spent two full seasons in the NHL. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Amerks sign veteran Rissmiller to tryout

BUFFALO – The Rochester Americans signed forward Patrick Rissmiller, a veteran of 192 NHL games, to a professional tryout contract today.

The 34-year-old has 18 goals, 46 points and 60 penalty minutes in NHL stints with San Jose, the New York Rangers, Atlanta and Florida. He spent two full seasons with the Sharks from 2006-08.

With T.J. Brennan, Cody Hodgson and Marcus Foligno all playing with the Sabres and first-round pick Zemgus Girgensons... Read the full article

Cody McCormick hurt his finger last year. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ McCormick returns from finger injury

Buffalo Sabres winger Cody McCormick, sidelined by a finger injury the first seven games, is making his season debut this afternoon in Montreal against the Canadiens.

The 29-year-old’s skating on the right wing beside Matt Ellis and John Scott.

McCormick kept playing after getting injured last winter. But the finger never healed properly.

He was concerned about rushing back and how the finger would hold up in a fight.

“It would react not too favorably ... Read the full article

Thomas Vanek has a point in every game so far. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Vanek named NHL’s third star for January

BUFFALO – Thomas Vanek’s scorching start to the lockout-shortened season – six goals and a league-high 15 points through only six games – has earned the slick Sabres winger the NHL’s third star for January.

Vanek’s coming off a dazzling three-goal, five point performance Thursday in the Sabres’ 7-4 win in Boston, his second five-point game this season. The Austrian had two goals and three assists opening day.

Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson, who’s 5-0-1 ... Read the full article

Shawn Thornton left early Thursday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Thornton out 7-10 days with concussion after fighting Sabres’ Scott

BUFFALO – Boston tough guy Shawn Thornton will be out seven to 10 days after suffering a concussion during his fight with new Sabres enforcer John Scott, the Bruins announced today.

The two heavyweights scrapped 2:53 into the Sabres’ 7-4 win Thursday. Scott quickly dropped Thornton with a few punches.

Thornton immediately left the game and never returned. Scott, meanwhile, skated 3:34.

The bout could already be one of the most popular in the ... Read the full article

Thomas Vanek began his point bonanza on opening day. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Crazy early pace by Sabres’ Vanek could help shatter short-season records

The scoring benchmarks set during the only other lockout-shortened season – the 48-game 1994-95 campaign – are steep. The NHL hadn’t fully devolved into a clutch-and-grab league then.

Top scorers still racked up some pretty gaudy numbers.

Peter Bondra’s 34 goals, two more than Jaromir Jagr, topped the league. Jagr and Eric Lindros both scored 70 points. Ron Francis had 48 assists.

With an utterly dominant three-goal, five-point performance in the Buffalo Sabres’ dizzying ... Read the full article

Mike Weber (center) tried to keep James van Riemsdyk out of Ryan Miller's crease Tuesday. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Weber still battling for regular spot on blue line

BUFFALO – The cycle repeats each year. Inevitably, Mike Weber begins the season as the Sabres’ seventh or eighth defenseman, a spare part.

Weber sat the first eight games and 20 of the opening 22 contests as a healthy scratch in 2010-11. The 25-year-old watched the first 10 games last season.

The Pittsburgh native couldn’t break the trend this year, sitting five times before Sabres coach Lindy Ruff dressed him for Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime loss ... Read the full article

Patrick Kaleta has battled injuries throughout his career. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Kaleta out of hospital, won’t play against Bruins

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Patrick Kaleta was released from the hospital today after injuring his neck in Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime loss to Toronto, the team announced.

Kaleta didn’t accompany the Sabres to Boston and won’t play Thursday against the Bruins.

The 26-year-old left 17:34 into the first period and went to the hospital as a precaution after turning as Mike Brown hit him into the boards.

Brown’s hit won’t be reviewed by the NHL, according ... Read the full article