Don Granato lasted three full season as Buffalo’s coach. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

After firing coach Don Granato, Sabres GM Kevyn Adams begins search for experienced replacement

BUFFALO – In firing coach Don Granato following a disappointing season in which the Sabres missed the playoffs for an NHL-record 13th consecutive year, general manager Kevyn Adams has shifted the onus to himself.

Adams has always accepted blame for the Sabres’ troubles, and in discussing Tuesday’s dismissal of Granato and the state of his team for 45 minutes in KeyBank Center, he again shouldered his share of the responsibility for an 84-point campaign.

But ... Read the full article

Alex Tuch has scored just one goal this season. ©2023, Michelinee Veluvolu

Sabres’ Alex Tuch starting to score, bust out of early-season slump: ‘I thought I let my teammates down’

BUFFALO – Sabres coach Don Granato loved the emotion and energy winger Alex Tuch displayed while fighting twice in the last week.

Tuch, 27, quickly made New York Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech pay for trying to knee linemate Jeff Skinner late in Saturday’s 3-1 win. Then when surly Ottawa Senators star Brady Tkachuk challenged Tuch following a trip late in Tuesday’s 6-4 victory, he accepted.

“I’m not going to say no, he’s already got (his ... Read the full article

Ilya Lyubushkin hadn’t scored a goal since last season. ©2023, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Don Granato sensed Ilya Lyubushkin would score OT goal

Ilya Lyubushkin had scored zero goals in his first 41 games with the Buffalo Sabres. In his five-year NHL career, the gritty Russian defenseman had scored just three goals in 252 contests, his last coming 10 months ago.

But when Lyubushkin grabbed the puck from Lightning captain Steven Stamkos in overtime Thursday and set off on a rare short-handed breakaway, Sabres coach Don Granato knew something special was about to happen.

“It was weird in ... Read the full article

Kale Clague joined Buffalo in the summer. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Kale Clague earning keep on blue line; Rasmus Dahlin returns

BUFFALO – In his previous stops, Sabres defenseman Kale Clague couldn’t always play aggressively. That often neutralized his skating, his greatest strength.

The Sabres, however, want to attack and push the pace. If players make mistakes, coach Don Granato and his staff can live with them.

“The system (here) allows me to be aggressive, whereas maybe some teams prior I’ve been a little bit more on my heels a little bit, based on that,” Clague ... Read the full article

Jacob Bryson (pictured) has been playing beside Rasmus Dahlin. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Buffalo adds defenseman; Jacob Bryson seizing leading role

BUFFALO – Just nine games in, the Sabres have already dipped deep into their defense reserves. Hours before Monday’s 8-3 win over the Detroit Red Wings, they recalled Jeremy Davies from the Rochester Americans.

Davies, 25, is the ninth defenseman who has been on the roster this season.

“We’re banged up on the back end and that’s the need, pressing need right now,” Sabres coach Don Granato said Monday prior to Davies’ recall.

They summoned ... Read the full article

Owen Power has played four NHL games. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres rookie Owen Power nearing end of dynamic, grueling season

BUFFALO – In a few weeks, after his dizzying year ends, Sabres rookie Owen Power might finally have a chance to sit back and enjoy a little time to himself.

Power, 19, had endured a grueling season prior to signing his entry-level NHL contract, leaving college to represent Team Canada at the Olympics more than 6,500 miles away in Beijing and at the World Junior Championship in Edmonton.

Even in the NHL, Power still has ... Read the full article

Buffalo claimed Drake Caggiula off waivers last season. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres notes: Drake Caggiula focused on showcasing offensive side

BUFFALO – As Sabres winger Drake Caggiula dropped down the lineup, his confidence in his offensive abilities nearly vanished.

Caggiula, 27, began his NHL career skating on scoring lines and the power play. Having just finished a dynamic college career, he was regarded as an offensive threat.

“I’ve always been an offensive player, all the way up until I got to the NHL,” Caggiula said prior to Tuesday’s 5-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks at ... Read the full article

Tim Kennedy (middle) began his career with Buffalo. ©2021, Dan Hickling

Sabres hire Tim Kennedy, Nathan Paetsch as development coaches

Having been late-round draft picks, ex-Buffalo Sabres Tim Kennedy and Nathan Paetsch beat long odds to advance and play in the NHL. They possess a unique understanding of a hockey player’s maturation.

Kennedy and Paetsch will now be sharing their knowledge with Sabres prospects. The team on Tuesday hired them as development coaches.

They join Dan Girardi, Seamus Kotyk and Mike Ansell on Adam Mair’s player development staff. Mair was teammates with Kennedy and ... Read the full article

Matt Ellis will move behind the bench permanently. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres change up coaching staff, retain Matt Ellis, add two new faces

Don Granato has overhauled the Buffalo Sabres’ coaching staff, retaining Matt Ellis and hiring Jason Christie and Marty Wilford as assistants, the team announced Thursday.

In addition, Justin White has been named video coordinator. Assistant coach Mike Bales, who’s charge of the goalies, and video coach Myles Fee will remain with the Sabres this season, according to the team. Both were hired by ex-coach Ralph Krueger.

Dan Girardi, an interim assistant coach last season, ... Read the full article

Matt Ellis (pictured) moved behind the bench when Don Granato was promoted. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres coach Don Granato to discuss filling out staff

As the Buffalo Sabres’ interim coach, Don Granato worked with a staff he inherited.

When general manager Kevyn Adams fired coach Ralph Krueger and assistant coach Steve Smith on March 17, he moved Matt Ellis, his director of player development, and Dan Girardi, a development coach, behind the bench.

Ellis replaced Granato, who ran the power play as an assistant under Krueger. Girardi, meanwhile, took over Smith’s role in charge of the defense.... Read the full article