Nathan Lieuwen is staying with the Sabres for now. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth feeling better; Nathan Lieuwen staying put

BUFFALO – The good news for the injury-riddled Sabres?

Starting goalie Jhonas Enroth, knocked out of Sunday’s 2-0 loss to Montreal with an apparent right leg injury, could play again this season. The Swede won’t accompany the Sabres on their five-game road trip, however.

“It looks at least a little bit better today than it did yesterday,” interim coach Ted Nolan said today inside the First Niagara Center before the Sabres left for Calgary.

The ... Read the full article

Nathan Lieuwen watches the play Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Injury to Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth forces Nathan Lieuwen to make NHL debut in loss to Canadiens

BUFFALO – Fresh off two weekend appearances with Rochester, goalie Nathan Lieuwen learned early Sunday he had earned his first recall to the Sabres.

Newcomer Michal Neuvirth was injured, so the 22-year-old would be backing up Jhonas Enroth inside the First Niagara Center.

“I was shocked. I was nervous. Everything,” a smiling Lieuwen said after stopping all 10 shots he faced in his NHL debut, a 2-0 loss to the Montreal Canadiens. “I couldn’t stop ... Read the full article

Nathan Lieuwen will dress tonight. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres star Thomas Vanek has jitters returning to Buffalo; Michal Neuvirth a ‘little banged up’

BUFFALO – Former Sabres star Thomas Vanek couldn’t quite explain what he felt walking into the First Niagara Center for the first time as an opponent this afternoon.

“It was actually a different feeling, for sure,” said Vanek, now a member of the Montreal Canadiens. “It’s just I can’t explain it. I felt pretty good all day. As soon as I walked in here I started to get a little of the jitter.”

Vanek, an ... Read the full article

The Sabres recalled Nathan Lieuwen today. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie Nathan Lieuwen nearly lost career to concussions

The Sabres recalled goalie Nathan Lieuwen from Rochester today. What’s the 22-year-old endured to make the NHL?

A lot.

I wrote this in July 2011 just a couple of weeks after the Sabres drafted him.

LEWISTON – Yeah, Nathan Lieuwen thought the worst. The Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect is only human, you know. He knew the two scary concussions that had derailed his promising junior hockey career could potentially force him to retire as teenager.... Read the full article

Nathan Lieuwen stops Zemgus Girgensons during development camp. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres recall goalie Nathan Lieuwen from Amerks

BUFFALO – In a surprising move, the Sabres today recalled goalie Nathan Lieuwen from Rochester on an emergency basis.

It’s unclear why the Sabres need Lieuwen. Goalie Jhonas Enroth finished Saturday’s 4-1 loss in New York to the Islanders. Michal Neuvirth backed him up.

Lieuwen, the 167th overall pick in 2011, has enjoyed a breakout AHL season with the Americans, wrestling the starting job away from Matt Hackett. The 22-year-old Lieuwen is 17-11-2 ... Read the full article

Andrey Makarov is beginning his first professional season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres send 13 players to Amerks

BUFFALO – The Sabres trimmed their training camp roster by 15 players today.

The team sent the following players to AHL Rochester: forwards Colin Jacobs, Eric Locke, Johnny McGuire, Jonathan Parker, Kevin Sunder, Shawn Szydlowski and Frederick Roy; defensemen Nick Crawford (pending waivers), Alex Lepkowski and Matt MacKenzie; goalies Connor Knapp, Nathan Lieuwen and Andrey Makarov.

In addition, the Sabres sent defenseman Brady Austin and forward Peter Trainor back to their junior clubs.... Read the full article

Connor Knapp went 1-6 in limited AHL action last season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres goalie prospects will battle for action with Amerks next season

BUFFALO – In his first professional season, Connor Knapp sat on the bench in the AHL and watched … and watched … and watched as David Leggio handled the bulk of the Rochester Americans’ goaltending duties.

Knapp made the first of his seven starts Nov. 3, the season’s 10th game. The rookie played again 13 days later, then sat another three weeks. After Knapp’s Dec. 22 appearance, Leggio started the next 15 games.

Finally, ... Read the full article

David Leggio has developed into one of the AHL’s best goalies. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Goalie David Leggio signs with Capitals, grateful for time in Sabres organization

BUFFALO – David Leggio has no hard feelings toward the Sabres.

Three summers ago, the goalie figured his championship season in Finland would generate interest back in North America. But offers never materialized. Finally, as the summer dragged on, the Sabres gave Leggio a chance when no one else would, signing him to play behind Jhonas Enroth with the Portland Pirates.

At that point, the 28-year-old Williamsville native had played three AHL games.

“They believed ... Read the full article

Cody Hodgson will return to the Sabres after the lockout ends. ©2012, Janet Schultz, Olean Times Herald

Sabres loan 20 players to Rochester

BUFFALO – With an NHL lockout likely hitting at midnight tonight, the Sabres loaned 20 AHL-eligible players, including forwards Marcus Foligno and Cody Hodgson, to the Rochester Americans on Friday.

Also assigned were: forwards Luke Adam, Riley Boychuk, Brian Flynn, Zemgus Girgensons, Jacob Lagace, Jonathan Parker, Kevin Sundher, Shawn Szydlowski, Corey Tropp, Phil Varone; defensemen Alex Biega, Nick Crawford, Jerome Gauthier-Leduc, Matt MacKenzie, Brayden McNabb, Mark Pysyk; goalies Connor Knapp and Nathan Lieuwen. The Sabres ... Read the full article

Nathan Lieuwen nearly retired early in his career. ©2012, Western Hockey League

Sabres ink Lieuwen to entry-level deal

BUFFALO – The Sabres have signed goalie Nathan Lieuwen, the 167th overall pick in 2011, to a three-year, entry-level contract.

The 20-year-old just finished his junior career with the Western Hockey League’s Kootenay Ice, going 27-20-8 with a 2.50 goals-against average, .914 save percentage and three shutouts in 57 games during 2011-12.

Lieuwen, 6-foot-5 and 190 pounds, suffered two concussions early in his WHL career and was nearly forced to retire. NHL teams bypassed him ... Read the full article