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Buffalo Sabres backup goalie Chad Johnson, an unrestricted free agent, said he's interested in returning to Buffalo but has to be shown the team is willing to make changes. "I know I can be a good goalie in this league and I showed that when things were the way they should be," Johnson said at locker cleanout day Monday. "I have to see the change, whether it's through p…

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You're not going to make any sweeping judgments on Casey Mittelstadt from six games with the NHL's worst team. Mittelstadt had some good moments and some troublesome ones in his first taste of NHL life with the Buffalo Sabres, just like you'd expect from any 19-year-old. But he left the Sabres and their fans waiting for more. Mittelstadt is going to start for Team USA a…

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TAMPA, Fla. -- The stat sheet doesn't tell nearly the whole story. By the numbers, it shows the Buffalo Sabres gave up three goals in the third period and lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning, 7-5, here Friday night. It was a wild game before 19,902 in Amalie Arena that saw the Lightning take a two-point lead over Boston while Buffalo dropped its third in a row and fell to 2…

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TAMPA, Fla. – Casey Mittelstadt and Alexander Nylander, the Buffalo Sabres' top draft picks the last two years, scored the first goals of their NHL careers Friday night early in the game against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Amalie Arena. Mittelstadt converted with a wrist shot on a power play at 2:57 of the first period while Nylander tipped home a Brendan Guhle shot at 6…

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The Buffalo Sabres have two games left. Brendan Guhle, Casey Nelson, Nick Baptiste, Alex Nylander, Kevin Porter and Linus Ullmark have as many as 29 remaining. That's fine by them. After the Sabres close the NHL season Friday in Tampa Bay and Saturday in Florida, the organization will send the aforementioned players back to Rochester. The Amerks have five regular-sea…

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NASHVILLE – A little more than nine months ago, Casey Mittelstadt was a wide-eyed 18-year-old getting shown the red carpet by the NHL in advance of the draft. He was on the top prospects' annual trip to Game Four of the Stanley Cup final and it landed him in the Music City. Predators-Penguins. The roars inside Bridgestone Arena. The thousands mobbing Broadway outside. H…

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NASHVILLE -- Folks in the Music City hope history can be made here this June with the Nashville Predators winning their first Stanley Cup. But it's another June in Nashville, now nearly 15 years ago, that continues to have major impact on the NHL. It was here in 2003 that the most iconic entry draft in league history took place. It's incredible to go down the list of se…

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Whatever classes Casey Mittelstadt took at the University of Minnesota, none could prepare him for a crash course in Buffalo Sabres 101. Ryan O'Reilly admitted the Sabres are the worst team in the NHL. Jack Eichel was frustrated by Buffalo's never-ending tendency to slack off. Robin Lehner left with an injury. The Sabres watched an early 2-0 lead go up in flames in a 6-…

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It's just Game 77 of 82 for the Sabres. For Buffalo, it's Casey Mittelstadt day. Here are Five Things to Know as the Sabres host the Detroit Red Wings at 7 p.m. Thursday in KeyBank Center. 1. The debut is here The whirlwind hits its next step for Mittelstadt. The first-round pick will make his NHL debut, continuing a nine-month tour in which he was drafted eighth …

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When Casey Mittelstadt showed up to sign his contract Tuesday, Jack Eichel was also in KeyBank Center. They introduced themselves, chatted and went out for lunch. It was more than a meal for Mittelstadt. It was food for thought. "He's pretty much the face of the team," the new Buffalo Sabres player said of Eichel. "It's definitely something pretty cool for a kid like…

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The Sabres introduced top prospect Casey Mittelstadt on Tuesday. Here are his thoughts on key topics: * The 19-year-old had lunch with Jack Eichel before meeting the media in KeyBank Center. "I just met Jack," Mittelstadt said. "We went out to lunch, which was nice to kind of get to know him. Obviously, he's pretty much the face of the team and obviously he's a reall…

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TORONTO – This has been a rough few months for Jason Botterill. He finally got to puff out his chest for a few minutes Monday evening. I actually saw him have multiple reasons to smile, too. Good for him. He deserved the moment. Botterill's dream of becoming an NHL general manager has been mostly a nightmare in his first season for the Buffalo Sabres. The first team he'…

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TORONTO – For Jason Botterill, the excitement is in the present. Casey Mittelstadt is in Buffalo, and the Sabres' top prospect is expected to make his NHL debut Thursday in KeyBank Center. The payoff, however, should come next season. "Getting a handle on what National Hockey League hockey is all about right now is going to be helpful for him," Botterill said Monday …

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TORONTO – News of Casey Mittelstadt agreeing to terms on his entry-level contract spread just as the Buffalo Sabres were wrapping up their morning skate in Air Canada Centre for Monday night's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Some players in the dressing room actually heard about it for the first time from reporters giving them the word. The response was unanimous:…

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The Sabres have signed their top prospect. Buffalo has agreed to a three-year deal with center Casey Mittelstadt. He is expected to arrive in town Monday or Tuesday. Coach Phil Housley said he'd like to play Mittelstadt as soon as possible. PHOTOS: Sabres draft pick Casey Mittelstadt Because of Mittelstadt's birth month (November) and a clause in the collective ba…