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John Vogl

This is my 15th season writing about the Sabres for The Buffalo News.


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Phil Housley says his positivity shouldn't be viewed as lack of accountability. The coach showed that to his struggling team Monday with a detailed meeting and hard practice. Housley seemed to be lowering expectations Saturday night when he said Buffalo played well in a 5-1 loss to Dallas. On Monday, he showed the 4-8-2 squad what it did wrong. "I tend to look at thi…

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Ryan O'Reilly never saw this start coming for the Sabres. "I thought we were going to win a lot and be in a much different spot," he said Monday, "but it's harder than it looks." The alternate captain speaks from experience. He has seen how long it can take to build a team. He's also seen how quickly one can fall apart. After helping Colorado make the playoffs as …

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Nick Baptiste's time on the sidelines could be over. The winger joined the Sabres for their trip to Arizona and Dallas, but he didn't play. Baptiste spent all of Monday's practice on a line with center Sam Reinhart and right wing Seth Griffith. Their audition could continue Tuesday when Washington visits KeyBank Center. The Sabres recalled Baptiste from Rochester las…

Latest Sabres

Phil Housley says his positivity shouldn't be viewed as lack of accountability. The coach showed that to his struggling team Monday with a detailed meeting and hard practice. Housley seemed to be lowering expectations Saturday night when he said Buffalo played well in a 5-1 loss to Dallas. On Monday, he showed the 4-8-2 squad what it did wrong. "I tend to look at thi…

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When the Buffalo Sabres took the ice Monday, four of their top eight defensemen were still absent. That may not be the case much longer. Coach Phil Housley said Nathan Beaulieu and Josh Gorges could return to practice this week, and Zach Bogosian has skated on his own the past few days. "The bottom line is it's good to see the guys are starting to get healthy now," H…

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Casey Mittelstadt's introduction to college hockey is going well – very well. The Sabres' first-round pick has points in eight of his nine games for Minnesota, including a goal Saturday night in the Gophers' 4-0 victory over Michigan State. The freshman scored his third goal after forcing a turnover, getting open in the slot and picking his spot. https://twitter.co…

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It's one month into Phil Housley's coaching career, and it certainly hasn't gone well. The Sabres have been blown out and beaten up, falling to injuries and opposing offenses. With a record of 4-8-2, Buffalo's points percentage of .357 is second-last in the NHL, ahead of only hapless Arizona. "It's easy to be negative right now," Housley said. Somehow, the coach isn'…

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DALLAS – Robin Lehner couldn't wait to play the Dallas Stars. It was a big game for him and the team, he said Saturday morning, and he was looking forward to starting a winning streak. He was gone after just 10:27. So was any chance the Sabres had of winning. The goaltender gave up three goals on seven shots, then watched the rest of the Sabres' 5-1 loss. "It's …

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DALLAS – That was ugly. Goaltender Robin Lehner had a terrible outing, which led to another forgettable game for the Sabres. Dallas pounced on Lehner's early mistakes and put a Texas-sized beating on Buffalo with a 5-1 victory. The Sabres faced a 4-0 deficit with just 12:51 off the clock Saturday. Dallas needed only eight shots to bury Buffalo in the early hole. …

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DALLAS – The Sabres spent much of the offseason building their defense corps. Maybe one of these days the six starters will play at the same time. Then again, the way things are going, maybe they won't. "Eventually, we'll get there," coach Phil Housley said. It didn't happen Saturday against Dallas as yet another member of the defense corps sat out because of in…

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DALLAS – More than 40 million people visit Las Vegas every year. The Sabres are thrilled to be among them. Buffalo has spent much of the season on the road, playing eight of its first 13 games away from home. The travels led to the following question for 16 players: "What's your favorite road city?" It was a tie at the top for Chicago and Las Vegas, which receiv…

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DALLAS – The Sabres have a losing record overall, but they have a chance to even their road record. Here are Five Things to Know as Buffalo visits Dallas on Saturday night. 1. Rasmus Ristolainen is out. The Sabres' top defenseman suffered an upper-body injury during Thursday's 5-4 win in Arizona and won't play against the Stars. Taylor Fedun will take the place …

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DALLAS – Rasmus Ristolainen was late to the victory party after the Sabres' last game. If they win again Saturday in Dallas, he'll miss the party altogether. Buffalo's No. 1 defenseman is out with an upper-body injury suffered during Thursday's 5-4 victory in Arizona. He met with an athletic trainer after the game before heading into the dressing room. "He's a day-…

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DALLAS – For the first time in more than a decade, the Rochester Americans scored six goals in a period. They needed another one in a shootout just to get the win. The goal lights were buzzing Friday night in Rochester as the Amerks picked up a 7-6 shootout victory over Hershey. All of the Amerks' regulation goals came during the second period, including five in a …

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DALLAS – It's rare to get a two-on-zero breakaway. Rarer still is for it to happen while a team is short-handed. The Sabres want opposing power plays to know it can happen to them – especially when Phil Housley throws his most gifted offensive players onto the ice. While the Buffalo coach typically employs defensive-minded forwards on his short-handed unit, he fi…