BUFFALO – Sabres center Tage Thompson pounced on Jalen Chatfield, making the defenseman pay for his open-ice hit on winger Vinnie Hinostroza early in Tuesday’s 4-2 preseason win over the Carolina Hurricanes’ junior varsity squad.
In fighting Chatfield 15:41 into the game, Thompson quickly completed a Gordie Howe hat trick – he scored a goal and recorded an assist earlier in the period – and further illustrated the tight-knit group the Sabres have become.
Thompson, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Coach Don Granato said it’s only natural that Sabres rookie JJ Peterka might be pressing as he battles to earn a roster spot out of training camp.
So far, Peterka, 20, has had an underwhelming preseason, registering just one assist in three outings.
“I would love to score a little bit more right now,” Peterka said this morning inside KeyBank Center. “But for me, it’s just trying to find my game and getting ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – For now, Peyton Krebs has settled in at left wing, a spot he often played down the stretch as a rookie for the Sabres last season.
On another team, Krebs, 21, might be utilized at center, his natural position. But the Sabres, having built up impressive depth down the middle, can construct a lineup featuring about six centers. So a couple must be moved to a wing.
Besides Krebs, three other centers – ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – After reassigning 23 players over the weekend, the Sabres nearly have their regular-season roster set.
On Monday, 28 players – 15 forwards, 10 defensemen and three goalies – practiced inside KeyBank Center. The Sabres held one session for the first time in training camp.
They must finalize their 23-man roster by 5 p.m. next Monday.
The Sabres, who have two preseason games left, starting with tonight’s home contest against the Carolina Hurricanes, have ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s terrific 32-save outing in Saturday afternoon’s 3-1 preseason win likely won’t sway the Sabres. They decided months ago that the Finn, a prospect labeled as their goalie of the future, should start the season in the minors.
So as they trim their training camp roster in the coming days, they’ll almost certainly assign the him to Rochester, where he will carry the load for the Americans.
Buffalo’s net, at least early ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Early in his career, Sabres center Casey Mittelstadt never thought he would someday go golfing with his general manager. But there he was recently, sharing the course with Kevyn Adams.
On the final hole, Mittelstadt and defenseman Rasmus Dahlin each birdied, giving their team a victory over Adams’ trio.
Besides some healthy competition, the outing offered Adams and the players an opportunity to bond outside of the rink.
Mittelstadt, 23, enjoyed getting to ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Before Sabres center Dylan Cozens left following last season to represent Team Canada at the World Championship, general manager Kevyn Adams asked him what he wanted to accomplish.
Adams told Cozens, 21, that he shouldn’t travel to Finland to simply play more hockey – he wanted him to set a goal for the tournament.
Cozens, having slumped at the end of his second NHL season, tallying just once in his final 29 games, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – What makes this training camp so unique for the Sabres, besides the fact they’re, you know, relevant again, is the lack of roster competition.
Right now, with the Sabres set to hold their first on-ice sessions today at KeyBank Center, their lineup looks set.
Sure, some guys will be moved around. There will inevitably be injuries. And they could feel compelled to keep one of their talented youngsters if he wows them.
... Read the full article
BUFFALO – As the Sabres made their picks at the recent NHL Draft, coach Don Granato said he was texting with some of his players, including an excited Dylan Cozens.
Cozens, 21, told Granato “how awesome” it was watching the Sabres add more talent. The center would quickly research their latest selection.
Granato texted Cozens a simple message: “These are the guys you’re going to be mentoring.”
... Read the full article
Buffalo Sabres prospect Devon Levi does things his way, embracing a patient approach in his development as a goalie while blocking out any outside noise.
To wit: Levi, the NCAA’s top goaltender last season, chose to return to Northeastern for his junior year instead of turning pro. If he had signed with the Sabres, perhaps he would’ve started for the Rochester Americans or earned a quick taste of the NHL.
But Levi, 20, is perfectly ... Read the full article