TORONTO – Ryan Johnson’s Saturday began in Rochester, where he was preparing to hop on a bus and play with the Americans in Syracuse. It ended in Scotiabank Arena, where the rookie celebrated a win with the Buffalo Sabres and his first NHL point.
Having lost Mattias Samuelsson to a lower-body injury Friday, the Sabres needed another defenseman, and they chose Johnson, 22, over more experienced options.
Johnson said when Rochester’s coaches told him ... Read the full article
TORONTO – No, it wasn’t quite a piano off Alex Tuch’s back. The Sabres winger had scored this season before his two third-period goals Saturday secured a 6-4 win over the Maple Leafs. He said he believes he had been skating well.
Piano’s too heavy for the expression.
“Monkey more than piano,” said Tuch, bringing the weight he was carrying early this season down about 700 pounds.
Fresh off a breakout 36-goal campaign, Tuch hadn’t ... Read the full article
TORONTO – Defenseman Mattias Samuelsson’s lower-body injury won’t sideline him long-term, Buffalo Sabres coach Don Granato said.
“We got good news … but he’s going to be out for a little bit,” Granato said prior to tonight’s game against the Maple Leafs in Scotiabank Arena.
Samuelsson, 23, has been placed on injured reserved, meaning he will miss at least a week. He left Friday’s 5-1 home loss to the Philadelphia Flyers.... Read the full article
BUFFALO – The final result, an ugly 5-1 loss, stings enough. The Sabres began Friday on a short roll, having won two straight games and three of their last four.
After a disappointing start this season, the Sabres appeared to have finally found a bit of a groove.
Ninety-one seconds into Friday’s game, they trailed 2-0. The Flyers had two shots on goal.
About five minutes later, Mattias Samuelsson, the Sabres’ sturdiest defenseman, departed the ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Through nine games, the Sabres have mostly utilized the same penalty killers as last season, with one exception. Newcomer Erik Johnson usually jumps over the boards first with defenseman Mattias Samuelsson, offering a stabilizing veteran presence.
So far, Johnson has helped, as the Sabres have killed 89.2 percent of their penalties, which ranked sixth in the NHL entering Monday’s games. Last season, they killed just 73 percent of their penalties, which ranked 28th ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – As the Sabres struggled out of the gate, they rarely played to their identity – a fast, relentless attack – and dropped three of their first four games.
Another loss would’ve moved their underwhelming start into the concerning category. More than a week into the season, they hadn’t had a signature effort.
Well, they finally showcased what makes them so dangerous in Saturday’s 3-1 win over the New York Islanders, a game not ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – In the first season following his retirement, former Sabres goalie Craig Anderson has occasionally dropped in and visited his old teammates.
It turns out he wasn’t just saying hello.
The Sabres on Thursday announced they’ve hired Anderson, 42, for a part-time position as a “hockey liaison.”
In his role, he will “continue to serve as a trusted voice in the Sabres’ locker room, providing insight, guidance, and support to the players and coaching ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Having started all three games, Sabres goalie Devon Levi earned a well-deserved break Wednesday, giving Eric Comrie and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen an opportunity to practice in their own net.
Levi usually patrols his own crease, so for the first time this season, they each faced their own shots and found a rhythm they wouldn’t have during a three-goalie session.
Carrying three netminders creates problems, including limited practice reps. Each day, Comrie, 28, and Luukkonen, ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – For more than half of Tuesday’s 3-2 overtime win, it felt like the Sabres might throttle the Tampa Bay Lightning and cruise to their first victory this season.
In opening up a 2-0 lead by the 15:28 mark, the Sabres had the Lightning on the ropes. But they let their Atlantic Division rival hang around, and the struggling heavyweight tied it with seven seconds left in regulation.
In the end, center Dylan Cozens’ ... Read the full article
BUFFALO – Scan through each NHL roster and try to pick out every so-called franchise defenseman. Most teams don’t have one.
In Owen Power and Rasmus Dahlin, the Sabres possess two.
This week, Power and Dahlin each signed long-term contract extensions, ensuring two foundational pieces can remain teammates through the 2030-31 season.... Read the full article