Anaheim’s Sam Steel skates in on Buffalo’s Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen on Tuesday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Ducks score ‘Michigan’ goal in win over Sabres; Casey Mittelstadt injured

BUFFALO – After an 11-day layoff, goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen looked sharp against the Anaheim Ducks in his first NHL action this season. The rest of the Sabres, meanwhile, clamped down, limiting chances following a slew of dreadful defensive efforts.

The end result, however, was their fifth consecutive loss. The Sabres, who have consistently been scoring goals, generated little offense for the first 40 minutes of Tuesday’s 2-0 loss.

The Ducks only needed Sonny Milano’s goal ... Read the full article

Jacob Bryson, shown here fending off Boston’s Erik Haula, likes Buffalo’s up-tempo system. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Offense on best scoring pace in 11 years as defense struggles

BUFFALO – Think about it, do kids grow up dreaming of scoring goals or playing defense? Hockey players develop an offensive mentality at a young age that remains with them.

“Every player in the NHL wants to play offense,” Sabres defenseman Jacob Bryson said prior to Tuesday’s 2-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks at KeyBank Center. “No one likes to play defense.”

Bryson, who knows he can’t shirk his defensive duties, loves the aggressive, fast-paced ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen was recalled Monday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres turn to Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen; Malcolm Subban skates after injury

BUFFALO – As expected, the struggling Sabres will change goalies tonight against the Anaheim Ducks, awarding prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen his first start this season.

Having played four games late last year, Luukkonen developed a feel of the NHL. The Finn performed well, winning his debut and posting a .906 save percentage.

“The hope is when you put him in there’s an element of relaxed to him, a comfort,” Sabres coach Don Granato said following this ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has had an inconsistent season in Rochester. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Reeling Sabres battling defensive woes amid goaltending crisis

BUFFALO – Sabres prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has struggled at times this season, performing below expectations. Yes, the goalie has enjoyed some nice moments, including his first shutout with the Rochester Americans.

But ideally, Luukkonen, 22, would be in the minors right now honing his game. The reeling Sabres only recalled him Monday because they’re in the midst of a goaltending crisis.

Having lost goalie Malcolm Subban to injury in his debut Saturday, Luukkonen was ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has played four NHL games. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

In need of goalie, Sabres recall Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen from Amerks

BUFFALO – The reeling Sabres, who have two injured goalies and another in COVID-19 protocol, this morning recalled prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen from the Rochester Americans.

Luukkonen, 22, stepped on the ice as the Sabres were beginning their practice inside KeyBank Center.

Goalie Malcolm Subban, who was injured in Saturday’s 6-2 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes, his Sabres debut, isn’t practicing this morning.

In addition to Luukkonen, goalie Aaron Dell and an emergency backup are on ... Read the full article

Victor Olofsson believes everyone on the Sabres can do better. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ defense keeps reeling in loss; Malcolm Subban injured in debut

After Saturday’s 6-2 loss, the Buffalo Sabres have allowed 20 goals during their three-game losing streak. They’ve given up at least five goals in seven of their last nine contests and 46 total – a whopping 5.1 an outing – during that stretch of futility.

Having been scored on 90 times through 24 games, they’re on pace to give up 308 goals, a stunning number would tie the franchise’s all-time mark for most goals against ... Read the full article

Craig Anderson hasn’t played since Nov. 2. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Craig Anderson ‘mystified’ by upper-body injury

Goalie Craig Anderson’s timeline to return from his upper-body injury has been changed to month to month on the Buffalo Sabres’ injury report.

Anderson, 40, had been listed as week to week. The veteran hasn’t played since suffering his injury Nov. 2.

“He has been as mystified as anybody,” Sabres coach Don Granato told reporters following Friday’s practice in Raleigh. “This is an elusive thing. You wake up each day and it could resolve and ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt scored in his return Thursday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres start fast in loss to Panthers; Casey Mittelstadt impressive in return

For more than 20 minutes Thursday against the heavyweight Florida Panthers, it appeared the Buffalo Sabres might pull off their biggest upset this season.

Goalie Aaron Dell, pressed into duty after Dustin Tokarski entered the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol, made some huge saves early. Winger Vinnie Hinostroza, who had two goals all season, doubled his output in less than 15 minutes, scoring twice. In between, center Dylan Cozens scored for the third straight game.

Still, the ... Read the full article

Goalie Malcolm Subban makes a save for Chicago on April 23. ©2021, John J. Kim, TNS

Sabres excited to add goalie Malcolm Subban after losing Dustin Tokarski

As Craig Anderson’s absence neared the one-month mark, many observers wondered when the Buffalo Sabres would address their goaltending.

While Dustin Tokarski has subbed admirably, he had never shouldered such a heavy workload in the NHL until last month. With backup Aaron Dell struggling, the Sabres have been running Tokarski ragged.

The Sabres needed another goalie, and on Thursday, shortly before Tokarski entered the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol, they found one, acquiring Malcolm Subban from the ... Read the full article

Dustin Tokarski has played 14 games this season.

Sabres goalie Dustin Tokarski enters NHL’s COVID-19 protocol

The Buffalo Sabres this afternoon announced goalie Dustin Tokarski has been placed in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol.

Tokarski, 32, is the first Sabres player to enter the league’s protocol this season. To replace Tokarski, the Sabres have recalled goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, 22, from the Rochester Americans.

The Sabres, who play a road game tonight against the Florida Panthers, also acquired goalie Malcolm Subban earlier today from the Chicago Blackhawks.... Read the full article