Robin Lehner played in a career-high 59 games last season. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Sabres sign goalie Robin Lehner to one-year contract

BUFFALO – The Sabres have avoided arbitration with Robin Lehner, signing the starting goalie to a one-year, $4 million contract, the team announced this morning.

Lehner, a restricted free agent, had an arbitration hearing scheduled for Thursday.

Not surprisingly, with a new regime and Lehner light on experience as a No. 1 goalie, the Sabres went with a short-term deal. Lehner will be an RFA again next year.

In his first full season as ... Read the full article

Robin Lehner played under former general manager Tim Murray in Ottawa. ©2017, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

With Tim Murray gone, Sabres goalie Robin Lehner a question mark as starter

BUFFALO – Before Tim Murray acquired Robin Lehner, the former general manager cycled through an absurd number of goalies – 10, to be exact – as he tore apart the Sabres in his first season and a half as general manager.

Despite terrific play from Jhonas Enroth, Anders Lindback and Michal Neuvirth – some believed they performed too well, hurting the tanking Sabres’ chances at the top pick – Murray wanted a new ... Read the full article

Marcus Foligno has been utilizing his big frame. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Marcus Foligno showcasing toughness

BUFFALO – Sabres winger Marcus Foligno has a simple explanation why he fixed his hair at a bizarre time – during a heavyweight scrap against Shawn Thornton, the NHL’s dean of fighters – in Tuesday’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers.

“Just try to get readjusted and get ready for round two,” a smiling Foligno said Thursday prior to the Sabres’ 3-1 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes inside KeyBank Center.

The bout was a ... Read the full article

Kyle Okposo will sign a lucrative contract. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres won’t find elite talent in free agency

BUFFALO – The pickings are so slim in NHL free agency this year, perhaps the most coveted player available, Kyle Okposo, has never cracked the 30-goal or 70-point marks.

Okposo, of course, is a talented winger. The Minnesota native is coming off a 22-goal, 64-point season with the New York Islanders. He has 139 goals and 369 points in 529 NHL games over nine years, including three 20-goal seasons and two 60-point campaigns.

Yes, Okposo ... Read the full article

Cole Schneider has strong AHL numbers. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Williamsville’s Cole Schneider paid dues to reach Sabres

BUFFALO – When Williamsville native Cole Schneider walked into the First Niagara Center on Thursday morning, it marked the first time the new Sabres winger had been in the building since he competed in a showcase of local high school players in 2008.

A lot happened to Schneider, 25, in between his trips to rink.

Schneider, who grew up cheering for the Sabres, will make his NHL debut in tonight’s home finale against the Columbus ... Read the full article

Tyler Ennis suffered a concussion Dec. 30. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Tyler Ennis thrilled to be back

BUFFALO – In the more than three months Tyler Ennis spent recovering from a concussion, the Sabres winger reflected on and developed a greater appreciation for what he calls “such a great job.”

For the first six years of his career, the 5-foot-9, 160-pound Ennis, 26, had been remarkably durable, rarely missing action. Then injuries started ravaging him this season. After missing 16 games early, he suffered a scary concussion Dec. 30 in Washington.

Ennis ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching scored 8:37 into his NHL debut. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Early Hudson Fasching goal helps Sabres beat Jets

BUFFALO – Prior to his NHL debut Saturday afternoon, Sabres winger Hudson Fasching told his family and friends he wouldn’t know what to do if he scored a goal in his first game.

The affable Fasching, who always seems to be bursting with energy, joked he might “blackout on adrenaline.”

“That was almost the case,” a smiling Fasching said after scoring a nifty goal 8:37 into the Sabres’ exciting 3-2 comeback win against the Winnipeg ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching made an appearance at the First Niagara Center in 2012 at the All-American Prospects Game. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres rookies Hudson Fasching, Casey Nelson set to debut

BUFFALO – Somewhere in Minnesota earlier today, the Fasching family was probably anxiously waiting for Sabres rookie Hudson Fasching to phone home with some special news.

“I think they’re kind of ready if they get the call,” Fasching said this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center.

Minutes after Fasching spoke, following a chat with Sabres coach Dan Bylsma, he likely called his parents to tell them he would be making his NHL debut Saturday afternoon ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching was excited to practice Thursday. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres rookies Hudson Fasching, Casey Nelson ready for NHL careers

BUFFALO – Hudson Fasching, of course, was supposed to crack the NHL. The Sabres rookie developed rapidly at the University of Minnesota, becoming one of the NCAA’s best power forwards by his junior season.

A year ago, Fasching, 20, decided he would turn pro following his third year.

But defenseman Casey Nelson, who debuted at practice with Fasching on Thursday, experienced a tougher route to the Sabres. The undrafted Nelson, 23, is ... Read the full article

Hudson Fasching just ended his college career. ©2016, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Hudson Fasching, Casey Nelson excited to join Sabres

BUFFALO – The Sabres rookies took different paths from college to the NHL.

Winger Hudson Fasching decided last year he would turn pro following his junior season. Meanwhile, defenseman Casey Nelson wasn’t sure a month ago if he would leave school after three seasons.

Of course, Fasching, 20, was supposed to here. The power forward’s stock steadily rose at the University of Minnesota after Los Angeles drafted him in 2013.

The undrafted Nelson, who called ... Read the full article