Noah Ostlund played five total games with Rochester late in the season. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres prospect Noah Ostlund’s hockey sense stands out with Rochester: ‘Basically blows your mind’

ROCHESTER – The Calder Cup Playoffs can be unforgiving to a 5-foot-11, 163-pound neophyte like Buffalo Sabres center prospect Noah Ostlund.

Forget about the talent and supreme hockey sense the Swede, 20, possesses. He was the lightest player on either roster during the Americans’ North Division semifinal series. No one had played fewer games in North America.

So after playing the first three playoff games, Ostlund, the 16th overall pick in 2022, took a ... Read the full article

Jiri Kulich had just two assists during the playoffs. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Despite late struggles in Rochester, Sabres happy with prospect Jiri Kulich’s development

Following a regular season in which he roared out of the gate, slumped in the middle and finished on a tear, Buffalo Sabres center prospect Jiri Kulich struggled in the Calder Cup Playoffs.

Kulich, 20, scored nine goals in his final 13 regular-season outings for the Rochester Americans. In a game he did not score during that torrid stretch, he pumped 11 shots on goal.

Then the Syracuse Crunch often stymied the Czech during the ... Read the full article

Rochester captain Michael Mersch reacts after scoring in Friday’s game. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Rochester Amerks’ ‘unreal group’ will change as players leave, join Sabres

ROCHESTER – Seth Appert believes each year, no matter how special of a group you had the previous season, you must start over. If a team comes together – that’s a big if – it takes time.

“If you think you can start where you left off the year before, you’re setting yourself up for massive failure,” the Americans coach said following Friday’s 5-2 season-ending loss to the Syracuse Crunch in Game 5 of the ... Read the full article

Nikita Novikov has acclimated to the AHL well. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Rochester rookie Nikita Novikov looks like special Sabres defense prospect

ROCHESTER – Buffalo Sabres defense prospect Nikita Novikov displayed special offensive instincts throughout his first regular season in North America.

“Borderline high-end,” said coach Seth Appert, whose Americans open the Calder Cup Playoffs tonight at Blue Cross Arena in a best-of-five series against the Syracuse Crunch.

Without the benefit of power-play time, the 6-foot-4, 209-pound Novikov compiled 20 assists, a high total for a rookie acclimating to a different brand of hockey.... Read the full article

Buffalo drafted Viktor Neuchev in 2022. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After slow start, Sabres prospect Viktor Neuchev thriving in Rochester

ROCHESTER – In early November, Seth Appert decided rookie winger Viktor Neuchev needed a bit of a wake-up call. So the Americans coach typed some thoughts into Google Translate and handed the Buffalo Sabres prospect a two-page note in Russian.

Appert wanted Neuchev, 20, to understand the commitment and daily habits it takes to become a great AHL player. Early last season, Appert had a similar meeting with center Jiri Kulich, who would score 24 ... Read the full article

Calle Sjalin has recorded four points in five games with Rochester. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After trade, Sabres prospect Calle Sjalin enjoying new opportunity in Rochester

ROCHESTER – In five games here, Buffalo Sabres defense prospect Calle Sjalin has found what he waited nearly two seasons for in Charlotte: a chance to showcase his talent.

In the Florida Panthers organization, Sjalin, 24, was often the odd man out with Checkers, who boast one of the AHL’s deepest blue lines.

So when the Panthers packaged him with a seventh-round pick on March 8 to acquire Sabres captain Kyle Okposo, Sjalin welcomed the ... Read the full article

Jiri Kulich is one of Buffalo’s top prospects. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Despite scoring slump, Sabres prospect Jiri Kulich playing some of best hockey of career in Rochester

ROCHESTER – Three months ago, when Buffalo Sabres prospect Jiri Kulich left to captain Team Czechia at the World Junior Championship, the Americans believed the reward outweighed any risk.

Sure, Kulich, 19, might not score at the same blistering pace later in the AHL season. But wearing the prestigious letter is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“We knew he was going to be a potential detriment coming back to us,” Amerks coach Seth Appert said following Tuesday’s ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt and Bowen Byram switched teams Wednesday. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres sad, surprised Casey Mittelstadt traded, excited for Bowen Byram

TORONTO – Sooner or later, it was going to happen. Over the past few years, as the Sabres grew into a tight-knit group, their young core remained intact. But as the team evolved and needs materialized and the salary cap became a factor again, someone would have to leave Buffalo.

On Wednesday, two days before the trade deadline, it happened. The Sabres dealt center Casey Mittelstadt, a beloved teammate and their leading scorer, to the ... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt skates this morning in Scotiabank Arena. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Stunner: Sabres trade top scorer Casey Mittelstadt to Avs for Bowen Byram

TORONTO – Sooner or later, it was going to happen. Over the past few years, as the Sabres grew into a tight-knit group, their young core remained intact. But as the team evolved and needs materialized and the salary cap became a factor again, someone would have to leave Buffalo.

This afternoon, two days before the trade deadline, it happened. The Sabres dealt center Casey Mittelstadt, a beloved teammate and their leading scorer, to the ... Read the full article

Buffalo prospect Isak Rosen has scored 13 goals for Rochester this season. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After recall and slump, Sabres prospect Isak Rosen scoring again for Rochester; Buffalo makes roster moves

ROCHESTER – What Sabres prospect Isak Rosen had heard about returning to the AHL following his first recall to the NHL turned out to be true.

To wit: when Buffalo summoned the Swedish winger in late November, he had recorded eight goals and a team-high 19 points in 16 games. Fresh off his strong rookie season, he had developed into one of the Americans’ drivers and top scoring threats.

Entering Friday’s road game against the ... Read the full article