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CHICAGO — Ryan O'Reilly and Vladimir Tarasenko got plenty of inquiries about the impact of their short summers and how tough it will be to defend a Stanley Cup. Meanwhile, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin got prodded to give insight on what the St. Louis Blues are in for trying to defend their title. But the NHL Player Media Tour also showcased the other side of Game 7 f…

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CHICAGO — Before you think about this season, there's plenty of relevance in probing how the last one ended for Jack Eichel. And that's not a reference to the Buffalo Sabres' miserable finish or the firing of Phil Housley. Eichel went to the World Championships in Slovakia, where he first met new coach Ralph Krueger to get started on building the player-coach relationsh…

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Tage Thompson knew darn well the question was coming Wednesday. And he handled it in a mature way. Amerks coach Chris Taylor said Thompson showed plenty of maturity at the end of last season too. Good signs indeed. Thompson isn't going to be the most important prospect at Sabres development camp this week in Harborcenter or during training camp in September. But circ…

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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 – 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 St. Louis Blues just won the Stanley Cup on Wednesday and were feted with a parade and rally under the Gateway Arch on Saturday. The official end of hockey season? Hardly. Things are done on the ice for now but will really start heating up off of it. The NHL Awards are Wednesday night in Las Vegas, with Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin joining St. Louis goalie Jordan…

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BOSTON – Gary Bettman had given Ryan O'Reilly the Conn Smythe Trophy. Then St. Louis teammate David Perron took care of the big moment. As a 3-year-old idolizing his 8-year-old brother, Cal, O'Reilly had practiced this in the family kitchen of their home outside London, Ont. Take the Stanley Cup and hold it over your head. Use whatever you could. A garbage can, milk jug…

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ST. LOUIS — The 52-year wait could end Sunday night. After 4,046 regular season games, the St. Louis Blues play the 390th playoff game in their history when they meet the Boston Bruins in Enterprise Center. For the first time, they can win the Stanley Cup with a victory. "It's crazy. It's tough to sleep right now," Blues center Ryan O'Reilly said Saturday on the e…

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ST. LOUIS — As the Stanley Cup final moves back to the land of the Gateway Arch for what could be the crowning moment of the the St. Louis Blues' 52-year history on Sunday night, the focus is once again off the players. No one is waxing poetic nearly enough about Jordan Binnington's 38-save performance in Game 5 in Boston. About three goals in two games for Ryan O'Reill…

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BOSTON — It all hit a smiling Ryan O'Reilly as he walked into the room in TD Garden. There were reporters and cameras and boom microphones everywhere. It's obviously not the Super Bowl — nothing is — but Stanley Cup Media Day was particularly crowded Sunday in Beantown. And here he was, holding a prominent seat just over 13 months after the lowest point of his career. …

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BOSTON — Ryan O'Reilly has thought a lot about July 1, 2018, the day he was sent from the Buffalo Sabres to the St. Louis Blues. St. Louis General Manager Doug Armstrong got O'Reilly on the phone and set in motion the turnaround moment in the 27-year-old's career after a last-place finish in Buffalo. "I remember talking to him and just saying, 'Thank you for bringing…

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Former Buffalo Sabres center Ryan O'Reilly, who was traded last summer to St. Louis, has finally sold his Middlesex Road home – nine months after heading west. O'Reilly sold his four-bedroom house for $1.363 million to a limited liability company called 186 Middlesex LLC. The identity of the buyer could not be independently verified. The 5,600-square-foot custom-buil…