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Longtime Sabres beat writer Bill Hoppe of BuffaloHockeyBeat.com, will be writing about Sabres prospects, the Rochester Americans and related topics this season. ROCHESTER – Once prospects get over the initial disappointment of being assigned to the ECHL, they often realize the league can be a terrific place to develop. “The game is built around confidence, and it’s a…

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It was, without question, his best game of the season. On Saturday in Boston, Benoit Pouliot had five shots on goal, scored his first of the season, was a plus-two and skated 15 minutes, 42 seconds. It was finally a bit of a breakthrough for the 31-year-old left winger in his first season with the Buffalo Sabres. "I skated a little bit more. I think my legs felt b…

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The Rochester Americans went to the ECHL to get some depth on the blue line. The Amerks called Devante Stephens from the Cincinnati Cyclones. Stephens made his pro hockey debut on Oct. 14, playing against Kalamazoo for the Cyclones. The 20-year-old had played in two games for Cincinnati. Before turning pro, Stephens played three seasons with the Kelowna Rockets in th…

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Current Team: Kelowna Rockets (WHL) Position: Defense Age: 19 Height: 6-foot-1 Weight: 176 lbs. Stats: Two goals, 11 points in 72 CHL games Drafted: 5th round (122nd overall) in the 2015 draft by Buffalo Sabres Connection: Stephens is used to coach Dan Lambert, who is running Development Camp this week. Stephens played under Lambert two years ago, when the current R…