Zach Redmond helped Rochester become a winner again. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Decision to leave Amerks for Germany ‘difficult’ for Zach Redmond

Zach Redmond and his wife, Maggie, wrestled with their decision. Rochester, after all, became their second home.

On the ice, Redmond, 31, thrived for three seasons, morphing into the Americans’ biggest star and perhaps the AHL’s most dynamic defensemen. The Redmonds felt so comfortable they purchased a house a five-minute drive from Blue Cross Arena.

“If I’m not (in the NHL), I really could not have imagined a better setup (than Rochester),” said Redmond, whose ... Read the full article

Dominic Franco (11) enjoyed a stellar college career. ©2020, Vegas Golden Knights

Amerks agree to terms with Army leading scorer Dominic Franco

The Rochester Americans have agreed to terms with forward Dominic Franco, Army’s leading scorer in each of the last three seasons, to a one-year AHL contract, the team announced today.

The 6-foot-5, 218-pound Franco scored 10 goals and 23 points in 33 games as a senior in 2019-20.

A memo Defense Secretary Mark Esper signed in November allows athletes like Franco at military academies to immediately play professional sports following their graduation if they receive ... Read the full article

Zach Redmond piled up points in Rochester. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Zach Redmond leaves Amerks, signs to play in Germany

Zach Redmond, the popular Rochester Americans veteran who was named the AHL’s best defenseman last year, has signed a contract to play next season in Germany.

Redmond, 31, will be joining Red Bull Munich, the same team in Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL), Germany’s top pro league, that produced Buffalo Sabres winger Dominik Kahun.

Replacing Redmond could be difficult. The Michigan native was often a dynamic presence over his three seasons with the Amerks, ... Read the full article

Erik Portillo enjoyed a terrific season. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres goalie prospect Erik Portillo named USHL All-Star

Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect Erik Portillo has been named a First Team All-Star in the junior United States Hockey League after posting a league-best 2.11 goals-against average with the Dubuque Fighting Saints.

Portillo also compiled a 19-5-1 record and a .915 save percentage in 27 games as a rookie in 2019-20. The Swede ranked fourth in wins and third in save percentage.

The Sabres drafted Portillo in the third round in 2019, 67th overall.... Read the full article

Dominik Hasek performed dynamically during the Sabres' run to the 1999 Stanley Cup final. ©2020, Janet Schultz

10 ‘Sabres Classics’ from 1999 playoffs to air over next two weeks

Ten more “Sabres Classics” – this time playoff games from 1999, including three Stanley Cup final contests – will be rebroadcast on MSG over the next two weeks.

Before falling to the Dallas Stars in the final, the Dominik Hasek-led Sabres roared through the Eastern Conference, needing only 15 games to reach the final.

The games are being aired because the COVID-19 pandemic forced the NHL to suspend its season indefinitely March 12.... Read the full article

Justin Bailey scored 28 goals with Utica before the season stopped. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Williamsville’s Justin Bailey waiting to resume monster season with Comets

If the COVID-19 pandemic hadn’t halted the AHL season, Justin Bailey would likely be playing big minutes right now in the Utica Comets’ first-round playoff series.

Of course, given the scoring prowess the former Buffalo Sabres prospect showcased – 28 goals in only 53 games – he could’ve earned another recall to the Vancouver Canucks.

Instead, Bailey, 24, is home in Williamsville making the best of a difficult situation.

“Right when I got home, I ... Read the full article

The Sabres drafted Dylan Cozens seventh overall in 2019. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens named Eastern Conference Player of the Year

A dynamic junior season in which Buffalo Sabres prospect Dylan Cozens scored 38 goals and 85 points in 51 games has earned him Western Hockey League Eastern Conference Player of the Year honors.

Cozens, a Lethbridge Hurricanes center, is a finalist for the Four Broncos Memorial Trophy, an award given annually to the player who enjoyed the WHL’s best regular season. The winner will be named May 20.

Sabres winger Sam Reinhart won the trophy ... Read the full article

Mikhail Grigorenko spent three seasons in the Sabres organization. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Former Sabres prospect Mikhail Grigorenko signs with Blue Jackets

Former Buffalo Sabres prospect Mikhail Grigorenko has landed with the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Following three seasons in the KHL starring for CSKA Moscow, Grigorenko today signed a one-year contract worth $1.2 million, according to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston.

The 25-year-old Russian last played in the NHL with the Colorado Avalanche in 2016-17.... Read the full article

Jay McKee scored the game-winning goal in Game 1 against Carolina. ©2020, Janet Schultz

Five ‘Sabres Classics’ from 2006 series against Hurricanes to air next week

Five more “Sabres Classics” – this time games from Buffalo’s wild Eastern Conference final against the Carolina Hurricanes in 2006 – will be rebroadcast on MSG next week.

After defeating the Ottawa Senators, the Sabres fell one game short of reaching the Stanley Cup final, losing an ultra-tight seven-game series to the Hurricanes.

The games are being aired because the COVID-19 pandemic forced the NHL to suspend its season indefinitely March 12.... Read the full article

Chris Bandura accompanies Sabres prospect Rasmus Asplund (right) at the 2016 NHL Draft in Buffalo. ©2020, Hickling Images

Sabres let go media relations head Chris Bandura, two other VPs

Chris Bandura, the Buffalo Sabres’ vice president of media relations, was one of 21 employees Pegula Sports and Entertainment dismissed Tuesday.

While PSE did not name Bandura in a press release announcing the layoffs as well as an additional 104 furloughs and temporary executive salary reductions within the organization because of the COVID-19 pandemic, The Buffalo News reported he was let go.

PSE also fired John Sinclair, the Sabres’ vice president of tickets and service, ... Read the full article