BUFFALO – Sabres defenseman Connor Clifton heard his new teammate, Rasmus Dahlin, feared him during his days with the Boston Bruins, and couldn’t believe it.
“He said that?” Clifton asked a reporter following Thursday’s opening session of training camp in KeyBank Center.
Dahlin sure did. He detested playing against Clifton, who relishes showcasing an aggressive, physical style that riles opponents.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Erik Johnson knows his time here could be short. The defenseman joined the Sabres on a one-year contract. At 35, he has entered perhaps the final phase of his terrific career.
Right now, the 17-year veteran might be more coveted for his experience and leadership than his skill.
Johnson’s still an asset on the ice, mind you. He averaged more than 17 minutes on it each game last season. In the first two ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – The deepest and most talented Sabres team since the rollicking post-lockout days of the mid-2000s will hit the ice today shouldering the expectation it can end the franchise’s embarrassing 12-year playoff drought.
Coming off a season in which they fell one win short of the postseason, the Sabres begin training camp with three sessions at KeyBank Center.
They have a whopping 64 players on their camp roster: seven goalies, 21 defensemen and 36 ... Read the full article
The Buffalo Sabres trimmed their defense corps Friday night, trading Ilya Lyubushkin to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for a fourth-round pick in 2025.
The Sabres had nine defensemen on one-way contracts prior to dealing Lyubushkin, who’s entering the final season of a two-year, $5.5 million contract.
While Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams has said he would be comfortable having a surfeit of defensemen in training camp, it wasn’t surprising the Sabres made a move.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – If Sabres coach Don Granato puts Erik Johnson on the top defense pairing, he believes the veteran can help Rasmus Dahlin reset from the mental pressure he often puts on himself.
Granato said Johnson, having been a first overall pick like Dahlin, has “walked that walk.”
Of course, Granato thinks Johnson, 35, would have a similar effect on Owen Power, the No. 1 selection in 2021. And if Johnson skates with Mattias ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Their relationship began almost 12 years ago. Connor Clifton was playing for the New Jersey Hitmen, a junior team in his home state. Don Granato was in his first season coaching at the U.S. National Team Development Program.
Clifton, a defenseman the Sabres signed Saturday, hadn’t made Team USA’s Under-17 squad that year. But during the season, he earned a brief recall to the program.
“That month of hockey I learned more than ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After defenseman Erik Johnson learned the Colorado Avalanche wouldn’t be re-signing him, he said five or six teams emerged as suitors in free agency.
The Sabres, a team he said reminds him of the Avalanche not long ago, quickly moved to the top of his list.
Johnson, 35, called some old teammates and bounced the interested clubs off them.
“All of them really said Buffalo’s a team on the rise,” said Johnson, who ... Read the full article
The Buffalo Sabres today made three moves in the opening hour of free agency, signing right-shot defensemen Erik Johnson and Connor Clifton and re-signing center Tyson Jost.
General manager Kevyn Adams said leading up to free agency he wanted to add to his blue line this offseason, and in Johnson and Clifton he addressed the Sabres’ most glaring need.
Johnson, 35, signed a $3.25 million contract. Meanwhile, Clifton, 28, inked a three-year deal with an ... Read the full article