Tom Ward has an impressive high school resume. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Tom Ward as assistant coach; Dan Catenacci re-signed

BUFFALO – The Sabres have hired Tom Ward, a top prep coach who groomed Sidney Crosby, Kyle Okposo and other future NHL players at Shattuck-St. Mary’s, as the final assistant on Dan Bylsma’s staff, the team announced this afternoon.

Ward, 52, spent the last 18 seasons as the head coach of the boys prep team at the Minnesota high school, winning nine USA Hockey National Championships and finishing as runner-up twice.

Shattuck is known for ... Read the full article

Pierre-Luc Dubois should be picked early tonight. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

NHL Draft could get crazy after Auston Matthews, early picks go

BUFFALO – Once ultra-talented forwards Auston Matthews, Patrik Laine and Jesse Puljujarvi are nabbed early tonight, the NHL Draft might really get interesting.

Sure, after the Toronto Maple Leafs select Matthews, there’s speculation the Winnipeg Jets could pass on Laine, the presumptive No. 2 pick, and go for Puljujarvi, another Finn, leaving Laine for the Columbus Blue Jackets. But those three players will almost certainly go first.

What could happen next on the First ... Read the full article

Bobs Woods coached with Anaheim before going to junior hockey. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Bob Woods as assistant coach

BUFFALO – Sabres coach Dan Bylsma filled one of the openings on his staff today, hiring Bob Woods as an assistant.

Woods, 48, just spent two seasons as the coach and general manager of the junior Saskatoon Blades, a Western Hockey League club. Prior to that, he was as an NHL assistant under Bruce Boudreau for six years in Washington and Anaheim.

Before his NHL run, Woods coached with the AHL Hershey Bears for five ... Read the full article

Auston Matthews should visit Buffalo with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Nov. 3. ©2016, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ 2016-17 schedule features long trips; Dan Bylsma close to making hires

BUFFALO – After the Sabres open their season Oct. 13 at home against the Montreal Canadiens, they start a four-game road trip – longer than any swing they had last season – three days later against Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.

That’s just one notable stretch of the 82-game 2016-17 schedule the NHL released Tuesday.

The Sabres, who went 19-17-5 on the road last season, better get comfortable playing away from the First Niagara ... Read the full article

Dave Barr spent one year with the Sabres. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Assistant coach Dave Barr leaves Sabres for Panthers

BUFFALO – The Sabres now have two assistant coaching vacancies, as Dave Barr has left the team to join former teammate Gerard Gallant’s staff with the Florida Panthers, according to multiple reports.

Sabres coach Dan Bylsma’s first staff – one that appeared to mesh quickly and work well together – has only assistant Terry Murray and goalie coach Andrew Allen left. The team shifted assistant Dan Lambert to Rochester last month to coach the AHL ... Read the full article

Matt Moulson skates in on Detroit goalie Petr Mrazek earlier this season. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Matt Moulson buying into new work plan

BUFFALO – At this point, five goals and 64 games into Sabres winger Matt Moulson’s miserable season, all the work he’s putting in and the revamped training regimen he has been following is about seeing results next season.

Yes, according to general manager Tim Murray, who ripped Moulson on the radio Thursday, and coach Dan Bylsma, the three-time 30-goal scorer is still in the Sabres’ plans. They talk about the veteran, 32, returning for ... Read the full article

Dan Bylsma didn’t know Andrew Allen. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Dan Bylsma impressed by goalie coach Andrew Allen

BUFFALO – Sabres coach Dan Bylsma had no previous connection to Andrew Allen before hiring the 38-year-old as goalie coach this week.

“Really word of mouth and had some great recommendations from people in Chicago,” Bylsma said Friday inside the First Niagara Center. “So I got to know him in the last week or 10 days and got him in here a little bit earlier this week.”

Allen, a former pro goalie, spent the last ... Read the full article

A fan shows off his new Jack Eichel jersey Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Jack Eichel chooses No. 15; Andrew Allen hired as goalie coach

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s not thinking too far ahead. But “if the opportunity presented itself to make the team” next season, he plans to wear No. 15.

Of course, minutes after he mentioned his first NHL number Friday morning, the Sabres tweeted they would be a selling a limited number of Eichel jerseys hours later at the First Niagara Center prior to the development camp scrimmage.

Before the gates even opened, the line stretched from ... Read the full article

Dan Bylsma completed his staff today. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Andrew Allen as goalie coach

BUFFALO – The Sabres completed their NHL coaching staff this morning, announcing they have hired Andrew Allen as goalie coach.

The 38-year-old Allen spent the last four seasons as the Chicago Blackhawks’ developmental goaltending coach, overseeing the netminders with the AHL Rockford IceHogs. Allen spent three seasons as St. Lawrence University’s goalie coach and also coached in Japan before joining the Blackhawks.

He played pro hockey for five seasons, spending time in the AHL and ... Read the full article

Dan Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Dan Lambert as assistant coach

BUFFALO – When development camp began Monday, there was an unfamiliar face on the ice putting the Sabres prospects through drills inside the First Niagara Center.

Who was it?

During the first session, the Sabres officially announced Dan Lambert’s hire as the third assistant on coach Dan Bylsma’s staff.

The 45-year-old Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last year, leading the junior club to a Western Hockey League championship and a Memorial Cup appearance in his ... Read the full article