Don Granato took over the Sabres last week. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Don Granato, Matt Ellis enter COVID-19 protocol; Kevyn Adams to coach Sabres

Interim Buffalo Sabres coach Don Granato and assistant Matt Ellis have entered the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol and will be unavailable for tonight’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the team announced late this afternoon. General manager Kevyn Adams will coach the team.

Granato and Ellis are self-isolating, according to the team. Adams said they’re asymptomatic. Entering COVID-19 protocol doesn’t mean the person has tested positive.

The coaches, of course, were in close contact with the players, ... Read the full article

Rasmus Ristolainen doesn’t think the Sabres play smart hockey. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres fall to Penguins, lose 15th straight: ‘We’re not working smart’

The hapless Buffalo Sabres kept hanging around Wednesday, trailing by one goal late in the second period despite being outshot by nearly a two-to-one margin.

No one, of course, expected the Sabres would win. But right now, they’re so bad a one-goal deficit is noteworthy.

That narrow margin did not last. The Pittsburgh Penguins pulled ahead late in the second period, capitalizing on two miscues from struggling winger Taylor Hall to take a commanding lead ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has played eight games with Rochester this season. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres goalie prospect Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen excited for first taste of NHL

If injured Buffalo Sabres goalie Linus Ullmark keeps progressing, he could play this week, perhaps as soon as tonight. So Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s first taste of the NHL might be brief.

Still, spending just a day or two with the Sabres, even on the taxi squad as their third goalie, should be a significant step for Luukkonen’s development.

“The more time a prospect can get around (the NHL), the easier it becomes for them to associate, ... Read the full article

Linus Ullmark has missed the last 13 games. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Linus Ullmark returns to practice; Sabres have more injuries

Having been sidelined the last 13 games, Linus Ullmark must keep testing his lower-body injury in practice. So as badly as the Buffalo Sabres need their No. 1 goalie back, he needs more than one session before he can play again.

“For now, there’s no set timetable for me; it’s more of a day-to-day basis,” Ullmark said on a Zoom call Tuesday after practicing for the first time since getting injured Feb. 23.

So on ... Read the full article

Dustin Tokarski played his first NHL game in more than four years on Monday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Goalie Dustin Tokarski shines in relief of injured Carter Hutton, Sabres still lose

After playing his first NHL game in more than four years, Buffalo Sabres goalie Dustin Tokarski allowed himself a moment to reflect on his journey back to the big leagues.

Tokarski, who played five playoff games for the Montreal Canadiens in 2014, hadn’t experienced any NHL action since Oct. 26, 2016.

Over the past few seasons, Tokarski, 31, quietly rebuilt his career, morphing into one of the AHL’s premier netminders.

So Tokarski’s strong 33-save effort ... Read the full article

Kyle Okposo practiced with the Sabres on Sunday. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Kyle Okposo sidelined with undisclosed injury

Sabres winger Kyle Okposo will miss tonight’s road game against the New York Rangers because of an undisclosed injury, interim coach Don Granato said.

Granato did not know how Okposo, who stayed in Buffalo, was injured. Okposo, 32, finished Sunday’s practice.

Update: Okposo has an upper-body injury, according to The Buffalo News.

“It was not something that took him off the ice in practice,” Granato said on a Zoom call from Madison Square Garden.... Read the full article

Linus Ullmark has missed 12 games. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Goalie Linus Ullmark to join Sabres on road trip, start practicing

BUFFALO – The Sabres plan for injured goalie Linus Ullmark to join them on their four-game road trip later this week, interim coach Don Granato said.

The Sabres have imploded without Ullmark, their No. 1 goalie. Their 13-game losing streak began Feb. 25, the game he suffered a lower-body injury.

“We need to integrate him into practice,” interim Sabres coach Don Granato said on a Zoom call this afternoon. “At some point, that’s the next ... Read the full article

The Sabres drafted Jonas Johansson in 2014. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres trade goalie Jonas Johansson to Avalanche

The Buffalo Sabres this afternoon traded goalie Jonas Johansson to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for a sixth-round pick in 2021.

The Sabres held Johansson, 25, out of Friday’s practice as they attempted to deal him.

With Johansson gone, Carter Hutton and Dustin Tokarski are the Sabres’ top two goalies. Hutton, 35, has a 1-10-1 record this season. Meanwhile, Tokarski, 31, hasn’t played in the NHL since a 10-minute stint in 2016-17.

A lower-body injury ... Read the full article

Jonas Johansson played three straight games last week. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres reportedly close to trading goalie Jonas Johansson

BUFFALO – When the Sabres signed minor league goalie Michael Houser to a one-year, $700,000 contract Friday, it ignited speculation they had another move in the works.

Sure enough, when the Sabres convened for Friday’s practice inside KeyBank Center, goalie Jonas Johansson was absent.

The Sabres are close to trading Johansson, according to The Buffalo News. The Swede would likely be dealt to the Colorado Avalanche, NHL Network analyst Kevin Weekes reported.

But the ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel is questionable for this weekend. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Jack Eichel questionable for weekend; Sabres could have reinforcements

BUFFALO – Sabres goalie Linus Ullmark will likely miss this weekend’s two-game series against the Philadelphia Flyers, coach Ralph Krueger said. Meanwhile, captain Jack Eichel is questionable for the home contests.

Both players have lower-body injuries and did not practice today inside KeyBank Center.

Ullmark, the Sabres’ No. 1 goalie, left Thursday’s 4-3 overtime loss to the New Jersey Devils after the first period. Kruger said Ullmark was having X-rays done this afternoon.

“We’re not ... Read the full article