Arttu Ruotsalainen made his AHL debut Friday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Amerks’ Arttu Ruotsalainen scores, looks like special prospect for Sabres

ROCHESTER – Having played 19 times earlier this season, Buffalo Sabres prospect Arttu Ruotsalainen has a strong advantage over most AHL players, many of whom haven’t experienced any game action for nearly a year.

Ruotsalainen, 23, enjoyed regular duty in his native Finland, morphing into perhaps Liiga’s biggest star. He left his team, Ilves, in December having scored a league-high 16 goals.

Not surprisingly, Ruotsalainen stood out in his North American debut Friday, scoring a ... Read the full article

The Sabres elevated Jonas Johansson from the taxi squad earlier this week. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ goaltending quickly becomes concern; Jonas Johansson ready to sub

BUFFALO – After allowing five goals on opening night, Sabres goalie Carter Hutton settled down, letting in just two over the next 100 minutes.

Fresh off a 10-month break, Hutton looked sharp and appeared poised to keep earning playing time. But Hutton left Tuesday’s 3-0 road loss to the Philadelphia Flyers early after getting hit in the head.

Hutton, 35, is day to day, coach Ralph Krueger said, and did not accompany the Sabres to ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen spent part of last season in Rochester. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres goalie prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen to join Amerks

Top Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen will be joining the Rochester Americans, his Finnish team announced today.

The Sabres loaned Luukkonen, 21, to HC TPS, a Liiga team, in August and had extended the loan agreement throughout the season.

The Amerks, the Sabres’ AHL affiliate, opened training camp Friday. The AHL season is scheduled to start Feb. 5.

In 13 games with HC TPS, Luukkonen compiled a 6-3-4 record with a 2.52 ... Read the full article

Arttu Ruotsalainen got off to a torrid start in Finland this season. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres release training camp roster, schedule; 37 players to participate

On Friday, the Buffalo Sabres will touch the KeyBank Center ice for the first time in 296 days and begin preparing for the most unusual of seasons.

The NHL will be attempting to play during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it will likely experience problems – positive tests, postponements or even cancellations – as the schedule unfolds.

But those potential roadblocks can be examined another day. The Sabres’ 10-month break is nearly over. Training camp officially ... Read the full article

The Sabres began sending prospects to Cincinnati in 2017-18.

Reports: Cincinnati Cyclones, Sabres’ ECHL affiliate, to sit out season

The Cincinnati Cyclones, the Buffalo Sabres’ ECHL affiliate, will not play in the 2020-21 season, according to Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek and The Buffalo News’ Lance Lysowski.

The Kalamazoo Wings and Idaho Steelheads will also sit out the season, according to Marek.

The COVID-19 pandemic has decimated minor league teams, which rely on gate revenue to operate.

On Nov. 18, the ECHL’s six-team North Division – the Adirondack Thunder, Brampton Beast, Maine Mariners, Newfoundland Growlers and ... Read the full article

Dustin Tokarski was ecstatic after winning the Calder Cup with Charlotte in 2019. ©2020, Gregg Forwerck, AHL

Goalie Dustin Tokarski thrilled to join Sabres: ‘I got that fire in me’

In his 11-year career, Dustin Tokarski has played 361 games in the American Hockey League, more than any active goalie. The Buffalo Sabres newcomer has won Calder Cup championships as a starter and a backup and as a prospect and a graybeard.

When Tokarski tends goal for the Rochester Americans, he will have played for 10 AHL teams. Three of them are no longer in the league.

Tokarski, 31, has experienced virtually everything in the ... Read the full article

Dustin Tokarski has played for nine AHL teams, including the Hamilton Bulldogs. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres add goalie depth, sign Dustin Tokarski to two-year contract

The Buffalo Sabres added goaltending depth to the organization today, signing Dustin Tokarski to a two-year contract with an average annual value of $725,000.

The veteran, one of the AHL’s most experienced goalies, is likely ticketed for the Rochester Americans, where he can help mentor goalie prospects Jonas Johansson and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen.

Tokarski’s arrival means Luukkonen, Buffalo’s top goalie prospect, could spend part of the upcoming season, assuming it can be played, with the ... Read the full article

Jonas Johansson played six games with the Sabres last season. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres loan goalie Jonas Johansson to German team

The Buffalo Sabres have loaned goalie prospect Jonas Johansson to the Krefeld Penguins, a team in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga, Germany’s top pro circuit.

Johansson, 25, played his first six NHL games last season, compiling a 1-3-1 record with a 2.94 goals-against average and an .894 save percentage.

The Swede enjoyed a terrific 2019-20 campaign with the Rochester Americans, posting a 14-4-3 mark with a 2.28 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage. He was ... Read the full article

Linus Ullmark played 34 games last season. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres could be looking to add goalie through free agency or trade

When Kevyn Adams took over the Buffalo Sabres and started gathering information on his team, he made it a priority to ask the coaches their feelings about the goaltending.

“One of the most important first conversations,” said the general manager, who will likely be busy Friday when free agency opens at noon.

Linus Ullmark, 27, thrived last season in his first prolonged run as an NHL starter, developing into the Sabres’ backbone. After beginning the ... Read the full article

Rasmus Asplund split last season between Buffalo and Rochester. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Report: Sabres loan Rasmus Asplund to Swedish team

The Buffalo Sabres have loaned center prospect Rasmus Asplund to Västerås IK, a second-tier team in his native Sweden, according to HockeyNews.se.

The move gives Asplund, 22, an opportunity to play while he waits for the 2020-21 North American season to begin. He can return to the Sabres whenever training camp opens.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the NHL and AHL to target early December as a possible start date instead of October.... Read the full article