At this point, as the losses pile up – Sunday afternoon’s 4-2 setback was the Buffalo Sabres’ sixth straight in regulation – they need to find positives and signs of development within their games.
In Friday’s 5-3 loss in St. Louis, the Sabres could take some solace in the tenacity they showcased while arguably outplaying the Blues, one of the NHL’s heavyweights.
What about Sunday’s loss to the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Arena?
Well, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Sabres rookie Jack Quinn scored his first NHL goal Thursday, a lethal wrist shot he wired under the crossbar from the right circle, four minutes after defenseman Rasmus Dahlin’s highlight-reel goal opened the scoring.
Dahlin, who slickly moved in from the point to score, created Quinn’s goal by deftly feeding him a between-the-legs backhand pass.
Early in the second period, center Dylan Cozens put the Sabres up two goals, zooming through the slot ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Casey Mittelstadt has never experienced anything like this season. The Sabres center, normally a durable presence, has played just four times, missing 36 total games while recovering from two upper-body injuries.
After going down opening night, he sat out 21 straight games. Then in his third contest back, he sustained another injury in the same area and has been sidelined the last 15 games.
Now, Mittelstadt, who underwent surgery Dec. 10, is close ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Center Casey Mittelstadt, who underwent surgery Dec. 10 to repair an upper-body injury, skated with the Sabres this morning and could play Saturday afternoon or Tuesday, coach Don Granato said.
“Big thing is to get him integrated in practice, see where he’s at,” Granato said following Mittelstadt’s first skate with the team getting hurt Dec. 7.
Mittelstadt, 23, has endured a frustrating season, playing just four games. After suffering an upper-body injury opening ... Read the full article
For five weeks this season, Sabres prospect Arttu Ruotsalainen played short minutes as Buffalo’s fourth-line center, mustering just two goals.
Finally, after the Sabres scratched Ruotsalainen four times over a five-game stretch in November, they sent him back to the AHL, where he began last season.
When Ruotsalainen, 24, arrived in Rochester, Americans coach Seth Appert was surprised at what he saw.
Ruotsalainen had performed like one of the AHL’s elite talents last season, recording ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the waning minutes of Tuesday’s 4-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights, Sabres center Curtis Lazar couldn’t get off the ice.
Lazar’s marathon shift began with 2:18 left in the third period and the Sabres clinging to a one-goal lead. Following an icing and a timeout, the play kept going and going as the Golden Knights pressed with the extra attacker.
“We knew what we had to do,” Lazar said following Wednesday’s ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Over the last four seasons, Rasmus Ristolainen has averaged 36 assists. No one should be surprised the Sabres defenseman can pass the puck well.
Still, seeing Ristolainen help create winger Sam Reinhart’s power-play goal in Tuesday’s 4-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights looked unusual.
Ristolainen dished the puck from the front of the net, his new position on the power play.
“I feel everyone was kind of joking and surprised I can ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Few figured coach Ralph Krueger could transform the Sabres so quickly that – gasp – a playoff berth would feel possible this season.
Players need time to understand new messages and systems. Besides, Krueger inherited a hapless team that won just two games last March.
It would take time – maybe months, even a season – before the Sabres showed real progress, right?
Well, six games into Krueger’s tenure, the Sabres are still ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the first period Monday afternoon, Sabres coach Ralph Krueger tapped winger Vladimir Sobotka for two defensive-zone draws.
“He went right out there and cleanly won them and took us out of our end,” Krueger said following the Sabres’ 4-0 victory over the Dallas Stars inside KeyBank Center.
Then 4:20 into the third period, Sobotka’s nifty pass past a sliding defender created linemate Jeff Skinner’s goal.
The Czech’s first point this season put ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Other than switching to goalie Carter Hutton this afternoon against the Dallas Stars, the Sabres will utilize the same lineup as the past two games inside KeyBank Center.
That means forward Curtis Lazar, who was recalled from Rochester Americans on Sunday, will be scratched.
Despite the Stars’ sorry 1-4-1 record, they possess a lot of talent.
“They’re a much, much better team that their record,” said coach Ralph Krueger, whose Sabres have ... Read the full article