Buffalo drafted Ryan Johnson (left) and Erik Portillo in 2019. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres prospects Ryan Johnson, Erik Portillo could have futures in Buffalo

BUFFALO – Right now, Ryan Johnson acknowledged he’s leaning toward returning to Minnesota for his senior season. Still, the defense prospect hasn’t ruled out turning pro. He plans to use this week’s development camp to evaluate the Sabres.

“I could kind of see where the organization is,” said Johnson, a first-round pick in 2019, 31st overall.

Johnson, who turns 21 on July 24, said if he goes back to college, he could eventually sign with ... Read the full article

Ilya Samsonov could be interesting goalie for Buffalo to pursue. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

Through free agency or trade, Sabres must find another goalie

BUFFALO – The Sabres possess a stable of strong goaltending prospects.

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, a Finn labeled as the Sabres’ goalie of the future, has looked impressive in his limited NHL action. While he has battled injuries and struggled at times in the minors, he’s still a terrific young talent.

The Sabres also boast Devon Levi, the NCAA’s top goalie last season at Northeastern, and drafted Topias Leinonen in the second round on Friday, ... Read the full article

Topias Leinonen is Buffalo’s latest goalie prospect. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

In Topias Leinonen, Sabres thrilled to draft another high-end goalie prospect

MONTREAL – All along, the Buffalo Sabres planned to select a goalie this year. But there was a problem: the 2022 NHL Draft was light on net prospects.

Still, one youngster, Topias Leinonen, NHL Central Scouting’s top-ranked European goalie, caught their eye.

“We felt this guy had first- (or) second-round value,” Jerry Forton, the Sabres’ director of amateur scouting, said Friday afternoon following the draft inside the Bell Centre. “The question was do we use ... Read the full article

The Sabres have eight picks today. ©2022, NHL

NHL Draft Tracker: Sabres select Finnish goalie Topias Leinonen 41st overall

MONTREAL – The Buffalo Sabres this morning selected Finnish goalie Topias Leinonen in the second round, 41st overall, at the NHL Draft.

The 6-foot-5, 233-pound Leinonen is NHL Central Scouting’s top-ranked European goalie.

Leinonen, 18, spent most of last season with JYP, a junior team, compiling a 9-10-0 record with a 2.28 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage in 21 games. He also played four games with JYP’s pro team in Liiga and made ... Read the full article