Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stops San Jose’s Anthony Duclair with some help from teammate Erik Johnson (6). ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stars in shutout, emerging as Sabres’ starter

BUFFALO – Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s run as the Sabres’ starting goalie this season lasted about a week.

Shortly after he grabbed the No. 1 job, he got sick and missed about 10 days. When he returned, rookie Devon Levi had re-established himself following a brief trip to the minors, and the netminders mostly alternated starts about the next month.

But since Dec. 30, Luukkonen, who posted a 28-save shutout in Monday afternoon’s 3-0 win over the ... Read the full article

Mattias Samuelsson went into concussion protocol Saturday. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres generate offense, still lose to Canucks; Mattias Samuelsson leaves game with head injury

BUFFALO – In the second period of Saturday afternoon’s 1-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks, the Sabres had just three defensemen available, so they utilized winger Zemgus Girgensons on the back end for a few shifts.

The Sabres, of course, started the game with six defensemen. But 13 seconds into the second period, Filip Hronek elbowed Mattias Samuelsson in the head, knocking him into concussion protocol out of the contest. At 4:02, J.T. Miller elbowed ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner has scored six of Buffalo’s 16 power-play goals. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Jeff Skinner week to week with injury; Buffalo makes lineup change

BUFFALO – In a best-case scenario, the Sabres will be without winger Jeff Skinner, their leading goal scorer, for about three or four games.

Skinner, 31, is week to week after suffering an upper-body injury in Tuesday’s 5-2 loss to the Seattle Kraken. Coach Don Granato said the veteran will be re-evaluated in a week.

So perhaps Skinner, who has rarely been injured during his six seasons in Buffalo, will be back soon.

Still, the ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner has scored a team-high 17 goals. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Jeff Skinner suffers injury; Sabres could make change on defense

BUFFALO – Winger Jeff Skinner, the Sabres’ leading goal scorer, suffered an upper-body injury in Tuesday’s 5-2 loss to the Seattle Kraken and could miss tonight’s game against the Ottawa Senators at KeyBank Center.

The Sabres are awaiting results of the imaging Skinner, 31, underwent Wednesday morning to determine how long he could be sidelined.

“It doesn’t look like it’s going to be long,” Sabres coach Don Granato following Wednesday’s practice.... Read the full article

Jordan Greenway is a top penalty killer. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Ten months after trade, Sabres’ Jordan Greenway playing big minutes

BUFFALO – In his seven-year career, Sabres winger Jordan Greenway has never earned this much ice time.

In each of the last two games entering Tuesday’s 5-2 loss to the Seattle Kraken, Greenway, a third-liner and top penalty killer, led the team’s forwards in ice time.

In Saturday’s 3-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, he skated 20 minutes, 19 seconds, marking the second time in his last 11 games he has eclipsed the 20-minute mark. ... Read the full article

Victor Olofsson (left) and Kyle Okposo celebrate together Dec. 21. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres captain Kyle Okposo returns to practice, could play soon

BUFFALO – At first, Kyle Okposo did not know he had suffered a lower-body injury. Then the Sabres captain had to take faceoff his next shift.

“(I) was feeling it then,” he said of the injury he suffered Dec. 31 in a 5-1 road loss to the Ottawa Senators. “And progressively your adrenaline takes over and you just finish the game, which is fine, and I knew I was going to be sore the next ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 40 saves Saturday. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stars in win over Penguins: ‘Stood on his head’

PITTSBURGH – Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen calmly faced each breakaway, patiently waiting in position in his crease as Penguins roared toward him. Each time, the Buffalo Sabres goalie stymied his opponent, barely moving and making the stops look easy.

In Saturday’s first period, shortly after Sabres winger Alex Tuch scored 2:53 into the game, superstar Sidney Crosby became Luukkonen’s first victim. In the second period, the Finn thwarted Rickard Rackell’s attempt. Later in the second, he stoned ... Read the full article

Victor Olofsson has scored four goals this season. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Victor Olofsson evolving in new role: ‘He’s become a better player’

PITTSBURGH – When you think of Buffalo Sabres winger Victor Olofsson scoring a goal, coach Don Granato said, you have a certain picture.

For much of the past five years, Olofsson has utilized his ultra-quick release and lethal shot, often from the circle area.

“You think of a certain spot on the ice where he opens up and it’s a one-timer,” Granato said following Wednesday’s practice in KeyBank Center. “It’s a shift slightly into the ... Read the full article

Devon Levi has faced Montreal once in his short career. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres rookie Devon Levi cherishes text message from Carey Price, childhood memories of Canadiens

BUFFALO – Once, when Sabres rookie Devon Levi was 10, he visited a restaurant in Montreal and had some pictures taken with his idol, Canadiens goalie Carey Price.

Another time, Levi’s girlfriend spotted Price at a basketball game and handed him the phone. The netminders ended up chatting on FaceTime for a bit.

Then prior to Levi’s fifth NHL start on April 10, Price texted him some words of advice before the Sabres beat the ... Read the full article

From left, Zach Benson, Casey Mittelstadt, Mattias Samuelsson and Rasmus Dahlin celebrate Mittelstadt’s game-tying goal Saturday. ©2023, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Kevyn Adams expresses faith in Don Granato; Seth Appert subs for ill coach in OT win

BUFFALO – Forty-five minutes prior to the Sabres’ 3-2 overtime victory against the Columbus Blue Jackets, general manager Kevyn Adams acknowledged he understands the frustration directed toward himself, coach Don Granato and the assistants.

The Sabres have woefully underachieved this season, morphing from one of the NHL’s up-and-coming young teams into perhaps its biggest disappointment.

They’re wildly inconsistent, regularly get outworked, often fall behind early in games and have trouble scoring and preventing goals. Nearly ... Read the full article