Anaheim drafted Kyle Olson in 2017. ©2019, Hickling Images

Invite Kyle Olson impressing Sabres at Prospects Challenge

BUFFALO – Sabres forward Kyle Olson started turning heads on his first shift, scoring just 30 seconds into Friday’s Prospects Challenge opener.

The quick goal turned out to be a harbinger for the rookie camp invite.

Olson, 20, has looked impressive throughout the Sabres’ two wins, showcasing his speed, tenacity and versatility.

“He’s smart, he’s skilled, he thinks the game very well, so he’s able to play with skilled players,” Sabres assistant general manager Randy ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen underwent hip surgery in April. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres goalie prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s recovery ‘right on track’

BUFFALO – Top Sabres goalie prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen is “right on track” in his recovery from hip surgery, assistant general manager Randy Sexton said.

“He’s making great progress,” Sexton said prior to Saturday’s 4-3 win over the Boston Bruins in the Prospects Challenge rookie tournament.

Still, Luukkonen will miss training camp. When the Finn underwent surgery in April, the Sabres said he would make a full recovery in six months.

They intend on sticking ... Read the full article

The Sabres drafted Brett Murray in the fourth round in 2016. ©2019, Hickling Images

Prospect Brett Murray’s commitment to conditioning impresses Sabres

BUFFALO – Not long ago, the Sabres made a deal with Brett Murray, a prospect whose commitment to conditioning wasn’t up to pro standards.

“What we told him was, ‘Look, you have to make the commitment. If you make a commitment and we see it in development camp, we’ll bring you to the rookie tournament,’” Sabres assistant general manager Randy Sexton said prior to Saturday’s 4-3 win over the Boston Bruins inside Harborcenter.

The ... Read the full article

Matej Pekar broke his collarbone in January. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres prospect Matej Pekar tenacious presence in return to ice

BUFFALO – Matej Pekar couldn’t stop smiling. After eight months anxiously waiting on the sideline, the Sabres prospect was just hours away from playing a game again.

“It definitely feels like forever,” Pekar said prior to Friday’s 6-4 win over the New Jersey Devils in the Prospects Challenge opener. “I haven’t played a game since January.”

On Jan. 10, the affable Pekar, 19, broke his collarbone with the Ontario Hockey League’s Barrie Colts, ending his ... Read the full article

The Sabres drafted Dylan Cozens seventh overall. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens looks sharp, scores in debut

BUFFALO – Once the puck dropped Friday, Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens never thought about the left thumb he had surgically repaired in July.

“I forgot about it and just went out and played hockey like I always play,” Cozens said after scoring a goal in Friday’s 6-4 win over the New Jersey Devils. “I just put that behind me.”

Cozens, who hurt his thumb during a development camp scrimmage June 29, wasn’t cleared to play ... Read the full article

Matej Pekar always seems to be smiling. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres prospect Matej Pekar ready for first game action in eight months

BUFFALO – Matej Pekar couldn’t stop smiling. After eight months anxiously waiting on the sideline, the Sabres prospect will finally play a game again tonight.

“It definitely feels like forever,” Pekar said this morning after the Sabres prepared for their Prospects Challenge opener against the New Jersey Devils inside Harborcenter. “I haven’t played a game since January.”

On Jan. 10, the affable Pekar, 19, broke his collarbone with the Ontario Hockey League’s Barrie Colts, ending ... Read the full article

Victor Olofsson scored 30 goals in the AHL last season. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres prospect Victor Olofsson ready to battle for roster spot

BUFFALO – A splendid rookie season in which winger Victor Olofsson scored 30 goals in the AHL and earned a promotion to the Sabres raised expectations this year.

How many former seventh-round picks are expected to not only secure an NHL roster spot after one year, but also contribute offense on a scoring line? Not many.

Following four seasons in the Swedish Hockey League, Olofsson, 24, acclimated to North American hockey right away in 2018-19, ... Read the full article

Dylan Cozens injured his thumb in development camp. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens close to playing: ‘I’m feeling good right now’

BUFFALO – Instead of wearing a red jersey this afternoon, Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens dressed more appropriately for the first rookie camp practice.

Cozens, who underwent surgery on his left thumb in early July, ditched the non-contact threads and sported a yellow jersey, meaning the seventh overall pick could do everything on the ice.

“I think it’s feeling normal right now, just being with the guys again, going out, practicing, being treated like another normal ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart has never played an NHL playoff game. ©2019, Janet Schultz

Sabres’ Sam Reinhart excited to play for new coach Ralph Krueger

BUFFALO – Since the Sabres drafted high-scoring winger Sam Reinhart second overall in 2014, the team has employed four coaches, a ridiculous number.

Not surprisingly, Reinhart, who has played 331 regular-season NHL games, has never sniffed the postseason.

But last spring, Reinhart, 23, played some meaningful contests as Team Canada captured a silver medal at the World Championship in Slovakia. In 2016, fresh off his rookie season, he won a gold medal at the tournament.... Read the full article

Brian Gionta spent three seasons with the Sabres. ©2019, Hickling Images

Former Sabres captain Brian Gionta elected to U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame

Former Buffalo Sabres captain Brian Gionta has been elected to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame, USA Hockey announced today.

Gionta, 40, is one of the most decorated American players ever, having won a Stanley Cup, a national championship, captained two NHL teams, an Olympic team and played 1,026 big league games.

The Greece native represented the U.S. in nine international tournaments, including two Olympics. He captained Team USA at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics.... Read the full article