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Memo to Terry Pegula, Kim Pegula and Russ Brandon: If you dare to increase ticket prices after this clown show of a hockey season, prepare for fan (and media) wrath unlike anything you've ever seen. The players in your locker room insist they care. It's lip service. Constantly pulling no-shows at the start of games in front of their soon-to-be former season ticket-holde…

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OTTAWA -- It's that time of year. The Ottawa Senators made a huge trade Tuesday with the Los Angeles Kings, offloading expensive defenseman Dion Phaneuf and getting veteran winger Marian Gaborik and center Nick Shore in return. Gaborik and Shore made their debuts here Thursday night against the Buffalo Sabres, whom most NHL observers also expect will be busy in advance …

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This corner did lots of pondering Tuesday that didn't have much to do with the Sabres and Anaheim Ducks. It was game 53 of a season going nowhere, the merciful start of the final 30 games of a campaign where the playoffs were a pipe dream before Thanksgiving. It ended with another bizarre overtime loss to drop Buffalo to a ghastly 14-39 in real math. The bottom line que…

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The Buffalo Sabres are treading water, trying not to sink into the basement of the NHL standings. In the words of Vito Corleone: How did things ever get this far? Before the season, we polled a panel of NHL media figures around the league for their opinions on the team. Now, after the All-Star break, we revisited some of our panelists to get their take on the struggling…

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TAMPA -- Back in the fall, there were few experts locally or across North America who pegged the Buffalo Sabres as a playoff team. But virtually no one pegged them to fall off a cliff, either. After the disappointment of last year's 78-point campaign and the much-ballyhooed hirings of coach Phil Housley and General Manager Jason Botterill, the most common consensus was …

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Jason Botterill certainly wants to get at least a prize in the sky for Evander Kane. So how can you blame the Sabres' general manager for shooting for the stars and the moon? What TSN is reporting as the Sabres' latest demands, a four-piece return for Kane that includes a first-round draft pick, seems unlikely to actually take place by the Feb. 26 trade deadline. But al…

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So you think we're done talking about droughts, right? Not on this watch. The way things are going for the Sabres, they'll have you smashing tables for an entirely different reason. Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane signed off for the season on Tuesday, and that puts the spotlight in the 716 clearly on Phil Housley and Jason Botterill. Just guessing here, but nobody i…

Beauts

A stalk of celery dipped into malaise is what 2017 Buffalo sports tasted like. The year was dominated by upheaval for the Bills and Sabres, with the biggest stories involving people being fired or traded. Record playoff slumps persist. The Bandits were terrible. The Bisons finished 21 games out of first place. None of the Big Four basketball programs made the NCAA To…

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Jason Botterill has shown this month that he'll make moves. The Buffalo Sabres' general manager continues to look at ways to improve his club. "We certainly have had conversations going," Botterill said Friday, "but I wouldn't say anything is imminent right now." Since Dec. 1, Botterill has recalled forwards Hudson Fasching and Evan Rodrigues, sent Matt Moulson to th…

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DENVER — Jason Botterill has a method to building an organizational culture that was familiar to Pittsburgh farmhands playing in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and is now getting translated to Sabres prospects in Rochester. The idea is for players to grow up through the system and then win Stanley Cups like they did with the Penguins. Scott Wilson is an example and he joined the…

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When Jason Botterill arrived in Buffalo and installed Randy Sexton as the general manager in Rochester, he said increased attention on the Amerks would result in more competition to make the Sabres. He was right. "That's definitely true," Sabres center and Rochester call-up Kyle Criscuolo said Friday. "There's just so many young guys down there, and everybody's tryin…

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Jason Botterill is very happy with Evander Kane. The Buffalo Sabres' general manager is also unsure whether he'll keep or trade the high-scoring winger. On one hand, trading Kane seems like a bad idea since he is the only consistent scorer on the NHL's lowest-scoring team. On the other, Buffalo has multiple needs and could lose the pending unrestricted free agent during…

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While the Sabres go through some huge growing pains, General Manager Jason Botterill is happy at some of the talk he's heard the last couple of days. Talk is about all the team has at the NHL level, but Botterill is more than impressed with what's going on in Rochester as the Amerks battle in the high-rent district of the AHL's North Division. "You've heard a lot about …

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The first month of the schedule is gone. And just like so many others in recent years, it's a bad one in the standings for the Buffalo Sabres. Saturday's 3-2 loss to San Jose dropped the Sabres to 3-7-2. They are seventh out of eight teams in the Atlantic Division, 15th out of 16 in the Eastern Conference and 28th out of 31 overall. Photo Gallery: Sharks 3, Sabres 2 …

Sports

A 1-2-1 road trip, a 1-4-2 season record. The bottom lines for the Buffalo Sabres aren't pretty at this point. The team's uneven jaunt to the West Coast ended late Tuesday night with a 5-4 overtime loss to the expansion Vegas Golden Knights, a game that saw the Sabres wipe out a 4-1 deficit in the final 10 minutes of regulation. It was a mostly disappointing performa…