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VANCOUVER – There are a lot of reasons the job of an NHL general manager is a tough one. Here's the latest one to add to the list: How do you know what kind of team to build these days? It sure seemed like the NHL was going back to a speed game when the Pittsburgh Penguins won back-to-back Stanley Cups in 2016 and 2017. Last year's Washington-Vegas Cup final certainly h…

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LAS VEGAS – It was just under 15 months ago when Robin Lehner had a panic attack during intermission of a Buffalo Sabres game in KeyBank Center, left the building before the final buzzer and finally admitted to his wife and the team that he needed help. Forget about the potential end of Lehner's hockey career, which was thrust into limbo when the Sabres walked away from…

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LAS VEGAS – Fellow Swede Elias Pettersson was the winner and Buffalo Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin finished in third place in balloting for the Calder Trophy as NHL Rookie of the Year announced here Wednesday night. Pettersson's victory was a landslide as he finished with 1,650 points and got 151 of 171 first-place votes from members of the Professional Hockey Writers…

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LAS VEGAS – Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association voted for full transparency in balloting for the NHL Awards in 2018, with all votes for each award being publicly revealed after the conclusion of the ceremony. Here are the ballots of the two voting members of The Buffalo News Sports Department for the awards that were handed out Wednesday in Mandalay B…

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LAS VEGAS – Patrick Kane is a self-professed hockey nerd. The South Buffalo native watched the Stanley Cup playoffs closely as Central Division rival St. Louis capped its run from last place in the league in January to the summit in June. It's a lesson Kane said his Chicago Blackhawks and a lot of other teams can learn from. "You're just watching as a fan, not really ro…

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The New York Islanders can clinch their first playoff berth since 2016 with a victory against the Sabres on Saturday night. Former Sabres goalie Robin Lehner equaled his career high in victories with 23 in the Islanders' 5-4 win against Winnipeg on Thursday night. He is 23-12 with a 2.22 goals against average. He was 14-26 for the NHL-worst Sabres last season with a 3.0…

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The penultimate contest on the Buffalo Sabres' seven-game homestand comes Tuesday night, and the visitors are one of the big stories of the season in the NHL. The New York Islanders will be in KeyBank Center for a 7 p.m. game, looking to maintain their hold on first place in the Metropolitan Division, while the Sabres continue to desperately grab points in the wild-card…

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SAN JOSE – In baseball, all these numbers have become pretty mainstream. Think of how MLB's Statcast has changed how you watch and talk about the game. There's launch angle and exit velocity. Average pitch velocity and spin rate. Catch probability too. It can be right there for you during the action. Perhaps not so much on television, although MLB Network's recap shows …

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When the year started, Robin Lehner was in a bad place. Both on the ice and off of it. Now as the calendar wraps up on 2018, life is good for Lehner. So is hockey. And that was written in that order intentionally. A lot of you booed Lehner during his three years with the Sabres. He probably deserved some of the catcalls. He didn't deserve others, as he often had a lo…

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Auld acquaintance will not be forgot tonight as the Sabres meet the New York Islanders in KeyBank Center — with former Buffalo goaltender Robin Lehner in the net for the visitors. The New Year's Eve game has a special 6:05 faceoff and will air as normal on MSG and WGR Radio. The Sabres, who are just 4-6-4 in their last 14 games, will be trying to shake off the disappoin…

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So we're just over a week into the season and because it's only October, there's no need for any massive overreactions. Logic dicates that's true. But the season's first month is nonetheless a time to start drawing some conclusions and watching for trends. Remember the caveat we presented in our Sabres preview section through the math of Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman: S…

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OSHAWA, Ont. — The wild hair is cropped short and the beard is gone. The Lou Lamoriello rules, you know. There's definitely some weight taken off as well. On the outside, Robin Lehner looks quite a bit different. Especially in uniform, the New York Islanders sweater looks a little odd. Dressed in his neat blue suit and looking noticeably trimmer early Friday afternoo…

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OSHAWA, Ont. – The Sabres wrap up the preseason Friday night against the New York Islanders and there will be a familiar face in the opposing goal crease at Tribute Communities Centre. Robin Lehner, Buffalo's starter much of the last three seasons, will get the call for the Islanders and split duties with Thomas Greiss against Sabres starter Carter Hutton. The Islanders…

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Members of the Buffalo Sabres offered their support to former teammate Robin Lehner on Thursday after the ex-Buffalo goaltender revealed why his season ended prematurely last spring. In a chilling first-person story written for the Athletic New York, Lehner said he was diagnosed "bipolar 1 with manic phases" and then spent seven weeks at The Meadows, a suburban Phoenix …

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Former Sabres goaltender Robin Lehner was dealing with injuries and inconsistency last season before the Sabres decided to walk away from his contract in June. As it turns out, he was dealing with much more. In a chilling first-person story written for the Athletic New York and published Thursday, Lehner has revealed he left the team at the end of last season because…