©2012

Sabres sign Varone to entry-level deal

BUFFALO – The Sabres have signed forward prospect Phil Varone to a three-year, entry-level contract, the club announced Monday.

The 21-year-old rookie has turned heads in Rochester this season, compiling a team-best 43 points and 35 assists. His assist total ranks fourth among AHL rookies and 15th overall. He ranks 12th in freshman scoring.

Varone attended Sabres training camp on a tryout before earning a one-year AHL contract.

Varone, 5-foot-10 and 186 pounds, enjoyed a ... Read the full article

Illness has sidelined Andrej Sekera the last five games. ©2012, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sekera’s return could force a Sabres defenseman out

BUFFALO – Ten days ago, as Andrej Sekera was preparing for warm-ups prior to the Sabres’ tilt against Carolina, the defenseman began feeling ill.

“Just came out of nowhere,” Sekera said Friday after practicing inside the First Niagara Center. “My stomach hurt before the game, and then it just hit me – fever, headaches.”

Sekera sat that game, and then hoped to play two nights later in Ottawa.

Instead, the Slovak’s condition “got worse and ... Read the full article

Tyler Ennis has three goals and six points in three games back at center. ©2012, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Ennis becoming center of attention

BUFFALO – Oh, Tyler Ennis enjoys playing center. Skating there allows the slick Sabres speedster to hold the puck and utilize his creativity more effectively. He can easily move east-west. If Ennis needs to change directions and go north-south, he can simply “turn the jets on,” he said.

“It gives me kind of free reign to use the ice,” Ennis said earlier this week inside the First Niagara Center.

It’s certainly showing. With three goals ... Read the full article

©2012

Avs spoil Foligno’s big night as Sabres blow late lead again

BUFFALO – The famous “Foligno Leap” reappeared for its highly anticipated single showing just 99 seconds into the Sabres’ shocking 5-4 shootout loss Wednesday to the Colorado Avalanche, when rookie Marcus Foligno drove hard to the net and connected on Tyler Ennis’ pass.

The 20-year-old winger then jumped into the air, fulfilling a promise he had made to honor his father, Sabres legend Mike Foligno, who celebrated in the same fashion during his long career.... Read the full article

©2012

Ruff feels Myers’ 3-game ban ‘a little harsh’

BUFFALO – Lindy Ruff said he “was surprised, disappointed” that the NHL banned Sabres defenseman Tyler Myers three games for ramming Montreal’s Scott Gomez into the boards from behind.

Both the coach and Myers knew the boarding penalty Monday, which concussed Gomez, would probably earn a suspension. But three games for a player with a clean record?

“I felt that as a first-time offender it was a little harsh,” Ruff said Wednesday prior to the ... Read the full article

©2012

Sabres’ Hodgson stuggling since deadline deal

BUFFALO – Sixteen days and eight games later, rookie Cody Hodgson, a centerpiece of the NHL trade deadline’s most-talked about transaction, is pointless and skating with Brad Boyes and Corey Tropp on what could be considered the Sabres’ fourth line.

Meanwhile, defenseman Alexander Sulzer, a throw-in to the deal with Vancouver, just played a tick under 24 minutes, a season high.

The German, a spare part a week ago, has possibly cemented a spot for ... Read the full article

©2012

Sabres’ Myers banned 3 games for Gomez hit

BUFFALO – Uh-oh. Starting tonight, the ninth-place Sabres will be missing star defenseman Tyler Myers for three straight games during their furious fight for the Eastern Conference’s final playoff spot.

Early Tuesday night, the NHL suspended Myers for ramming Scott Gomez’s head into the boards from behind Monday in the Sabres’ 3-2 overtime win against the Montreal Canadiens.

“At no point during Myers’ approach to the check does he see anything other than Gomez’s back,” ... Read the full article

©2012

Sabres respond to Canadiens’ late goal, triumph in OT

BUFFALO – Just two months ago, allowing the tying goal with 3.5 seconds left in regulation likely would’ve cooked the Sabres, defenseman Tyler Myers said.

“I would say it would be very tough for our group,” said Myers, whose goal 2:01 into overtime Monday clinched a 3-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens, the surging Sabres’ ninth triumph in 12 tries.

Back in January, the Sabres had morphed into a disjointed, ugly mess. They wilted under ... Read the full article

©2012

Sabres’ Foligno plans special goal jump to honor father

BUFFALO – Don’t fret, Sabres fans. The Foligno jump is coming. It’ll just have to take place following Marcus Foligno’s second goal.

The top prospect planned to honor his father, popular former Sabres captain Mike Foligno, by leaping into the air to celebrate his first big league score.

Mike jumped after about every one of his 355 goals from 1979-94. Marcus’ brother Nick Foligno, a Senators winger, paid homage once as a rookie in 2007.... Read the full article

©2012

Newcomer Sulzer quickly earning keep with Sabres

BUFFALO – It was instantly better. Upon his arrival from Vancouver on Feb. 27, Alexander Sulzer went from the Canucks’ eighth defenseman to the Sabres’ seventh.

Yes, the German was still a spare part. But moving up one slot made him that much closer to playing, something he had only done 12 times in Vancouver all season. Sulzer was a healthy scratch an incredible 51 times.

“Obviously, since there are only seven defensemen, if ... Read the full article