Scott Ratzlaff tries to stop Aleksandr Kisakov during development camp in 2023. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Rochester signs Sabres goalie prospect Scott Ratzlaff to amateur tryout

The Rochester Americans on Wednesday signed Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect Scott Ratzlaff to an amateur tryout.

Ratzlaff’s junior team, the Seattle Thunderbirds, did not qualify for the Western Hockey League playoffs.

Right now, the Amerks need another goalie. The Sabres recently recalled rookie Devon Levi. Meanwhile, veteran Dustin Tokarski did not play over the weekend after battling through an undisclosed problem in last Wednesday’s 6-5 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack.

Update: Tokarski came off ... Read the full article

Buffalo drafted prospect Vsevolod Komarov in 2022. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

After trade, Vsevolod Komarov cements status as one of Sabres’ top prospects

So, what kind of defenseman is Buffalo Sabres prospect Vsevolod Komarov?

The Russian recorded 69 points during the regular season, including 55 assists, the Quebec Maritime Junior Hockey League’s highest totals among defenders.

So, yes, Komarov, whose Drummondville Voltigeurs begin their first-round playoff series Friday, can be labeled as an offensive defenseman.

“You’ll find with a lot of guys putting up those kinds of points, that that’s their gimmick, like they are an offensive guy, ... Read the full article

Buffalo drafted Anton Wahlberg in 2023. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres assign forward prospect Anton Wahlberg to Rochester, make other roster move

The Buffalo Sabres this morning assigned forward prospect Anton Wahlberg, who spent all season playing for Malmo in the Swedish Hockey League, to the Rochester Americans.

The Amerks, who are fighting for a spot in the Calder Cup Playoffs, have 11 games left, starting with this afternoon’s home contest against the Utica Comets.

Wahlberg, 18, compiled five goals and 10 points in 42 games with Malmo this season. He also recorded one goal and three ... Read the full article

Buffalo drafted Viktor Neuchev in 2022. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After slow start, Sabres prospect Viktor Neuchev thriving in Rochester

ROCHESTER – In early November, Seth Appert decided rookie winger Viktor Neuchev needed a bit of a wake-up call. So the Americans coach typed some thoughts into Google Translate and handed the Buffalo Sabres prospect a two-page note in Russian.

Appert wanted Neuchev, 20, to understand the commitment and daily habits it takes to become a great AHL player. Early last season, Appert had a similar meeting with center Jiri Kulich, who would score 24 ... Read the full article

Calle Sjalin has recorded four points in five games with Rochester. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After trade, Sabres prospect Calle Sjalin enjoying new opportunity in Rochester

ROCHESTER – In five games here, Buffalo Sabres defense prospect Calle Sjalin has found what he waited nearly two seasons for in Charlotte: a chance to showcase his talent.

In the Florida Panthers organization, Sjalin, 24, was often the odd man out with Checkers, who boast one of the AHL’s deepest blue lines.

So when the Panthers packaged him with a seventh-round pick on March 8 to acquire Sabres captain Kyle Okposo, Sjalin welcomed the ... Read the full article

Jiri Kulich is one of Buffalo’s top prospects. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Despite scoring slump, Sabres prospect Jiri Kulich playing some of best hockey of career in Rochester

ROCHESTER – Three months ago, when Buffalo Sabres prospect Jiri Kulich left to captain Team Czechia at the World Junior Championship, the Americans believed the reward outweighed any risk.

Sure, Kulich, 19, might not score at the same blistering pace later in the AHL season. But wearing the prestigious letter is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“We knew he was going to be a potential detriment coming back to us,” Amerks coach Seth Appert said following Tuesday’s ... Read the full article

Devon Levi has played 19 games with Rochester. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres recall goalie prospect Devon Levi from Rochester

DETROIT – Rookie goalie Devon Levi is back with the Buffalo Sabres.

The Sabres on Saturday recalled Levi, 22, from the Rochester Americans following their 4-1 loss to the Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena.

Levi, who has played 20 games for the Sabres this season, is expected to start Monday in Seattle against the Kraken or Tuesday in Vancouver versus Canucks.

Sabres goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has played four straight games and 24 of the ... Read the full article

Tyson Jost has spent most of his career in the NHL. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

After surprising demotion to Rochester, Tyson Jost playing regularly for Sabres

BUFFALO – Tyson Jost impressed the Sabres so much after they plucked him off waivers last season that he earned regular duty and a $2 million contract. So, yes, when they waived the center in late December and assigned him to the minors – he had played just 13 games in the AHL in his career – he had a difficult time handling it.

“It was extremely tough,” Jost told the Times Herald prior to ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has played 41 games this season. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen feeding off heavy workload, earning spot among NHL’s elite

BUFFALO – Following a rare breather a week ago, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has resumed one of the NHL’s heaviest workloads as the Sabres’ No. 1 goalie.

Tonight against the New York Islanders at KeyBank Center, Luukkonen, 25 is expected to start his third straight game. The Finn has earned the nod in 11 of the last 12 contests and 21 of the last 24 since Jan. 11.

Luukkonen has played an NHL-high 22 times during that ... Read the full article

Zemgus Girgensons has played 11 seasons in Buffalo. ©2024, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Zemgus Girgensons sees future in Buffalo, glad trade deadline passed

BUFFALO – Prior to Friday’s trade deadline, Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams spoke to some teams interested in acquiring winger Zemgus Girgensons and likely could’ve received a late-round pick in exchange for the 11-year veteran.

But in Girgensons, Adams said he sees a player “so important within the fabric of this team.” After dealing captain Kyle Okposo and defenseman Erik Johnson, he couldn’t trade Girgensons simply because he has an expiring contract.

It sounds like ... Read the full article