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Report: Thrashers sold to Winnipeg group (which in turn denies report)

The Jets rumors are flying.

The Globe and Mail is reporting that the Atlanta Thrashers have been sold to True North Sports and Entertainment, the group that plans to bring an NHL team back to Winnipeg. The newspaper says an announcement will be made Tuesday, with Commissioner Gary Bettman present.

True North, however, has told the Winnipeg Free Press the report is not accurate. Earlier tonight, Bettman said on his weekly radio show that no deal is in place to move the Thrashers.

Here's where it gets interesting, according to the Free Press. One member of the True North ownership group, David Thomson, owns the Globe and Mail. It's possible (probable?) that he leaked the sale to his own paper, and now the rest of True North is trying to do damage control.

The guess here based on the info is that the deal is done.

---John Vogl

Eastern Conference Game Three: Take your pick

Thursday morning look around the NHL

Happy Thursday. It's not raining yet -- but it will be soon. Since Donn Esmonde wrote we should give thanks for our weather, it's rained in 12 of the 18 days. Coincidence?

While waiting to pull out the umbrella and get the message that Little League is canceled, here's your look around the NHL ...

*Brayden McNabb is following the Tyler Myers career path. He and the Buffalo Sabres can only hope it continues.

McNabb, one of the Sabres' top defensive prospects, agreed to a three-year, entry-level contract Wednesday. The signing comes days after he helped lead his junior team to the Western Hockey League championship and into the Memorial Cup.

The Sabres signed Myers after identical feats two years ago.

*Bucky Gleason writes the affiliation between Buffalo and Rochester made sense for nearly three decades and makes sense now. Their relationship is an easy sell and created a broader fan base in both cities. The Amerks have teetered on instability since the Sabres dropped them three years ago. Reuniting them should make both franchises stronger.

*Vancouver Canucks defenseman Kevin Bieksa scored the go-ahead goal on a rare breakaway with eight minutes left in the second period and answered a challenge to fight by pounding on San Jose forward Patrick Marleau six minutes later.

That angered Ben Eager, which led to a run of undisciplined third-period penalties that the Canucks quickly turned into a 7-3 rout of the Sharks on Wednesday night. Vancouver leads 2-0 in the Western Conference finals that now shifts to San Jose for the next two games. Game Three is Friday.

*Boston and Tampa Bay have played a pair of surprisingly high scoring games and the trend might continue the way the Eastern Conference finals is going.

The series is tied 1-1 and the teams have combined for 18 goals. Game Three is tonight in Tampa and if scoring continues to come from unexpected players the big numbers will continue.

*Atlanta Thrashers fans are planning to take advantage of possibly their last opportunity to demonstrate support for the NHL to remain in Atlanta. Thrashers fans are planning a rally before the team's annual select-a-seat event for season-ticket holders at Philips Arena on Saturday.

*With the Thrashers being pursued by an ownership group in Winnipeg, Manitoba taxpayers won't subsidize an NHL team in the city, but the province will consider everything else in its power to score the return of professional hockey, Premier Greg Selinger said Wednesday.

*Edmonton city council has approved an agreement framework with the Katz Group to build a new downtown arena. The city says the deal will keep the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL in the city for 35 years. The arena will cost $450 million, with the city providing $125 million, the Katz Group paying $100 million and $125 million coming from a user-paid facility fee.

(As someone who has yet to see an Edmonton media relations worker, I hope some of that money is used to hire at least one person to work in the arena's new press box.)

*The National Hockey League has been honored as the Sports League of the Year by the SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily.

*The search for the next coach of the Dallas Stars has been slow going so far, but it should start to gain a little steam soon. So far there have been no formal interviews, writes, but General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk has had some contact "in one way or another" with potential candidates. Among that group appear to be Montreal assistant coach Kirk Muller, Texas Stars coach Glen Gulutzan, Dallas associate coach Willie Desjardins and former Dallas coach Ken Hitchcock, who just wrapped up a stint as head coach of Team Canada at the World Championship in Slovakia.

---John Vogl

Sabres sign McNabb, a top defensive prospect

Brayden McNabb, who is preparing for Canada's junior hockey championship, has found time to sign his first professional contract.

McNabb and the Buffalo Sabres agreed on terms today for a three-year, entry-level deal. Financial details are not yet available.

McNabb, the Sabres' third-round pick in the 2009 draft, helped the Kootenay Ice win the Western Hockey League championship and will play in the Memorial Cup beginning this weekend.

"Brayden is a big kid with great offensive abilities, and he’s continued to improve every year in Kootenay," Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier said in a statement. "His outstanding performance in the WHL playoffs was just another positive sign in his development, and we are thrilled to now have him under contract for the next three years."

McNabb, a 6-foot-5, 216-pound defenseman, was a physical blue-liner with offensive potential when he entered the draft. He'll leave juniors as an offensive threat with a mean streak.

McNabb tied for second in scoring in the WHL playoffs, recording three goals and 27 points in 19 games. He had more assists (24) than any other defenseman had points. The run extended a season that saw McNabb record career bests with 22 goals, 50 assists and 72 points in 59 games.

The 20-year-old improved every season with Kootenay. He had two goals, 11 points and 63 penalty minutes during his rookie year of 2007-08. He followed that 10 goals, 36 points and 140 minutes. He put up 17 goals, 57 points and 121 PIMs last season before bettering the offensive numbers this year.

The Memorial Cup begins Friday in Mississauga, Ont. McNabb's first game is Saturday.

---John Vogl

Boughner leaves Blue Jackets for Windsor

Bob Boughner, the former Sabres defenseman, is leaving the NHL to head back to his junior team.

Boughner has stepped down as Scott Arniel's assistant coach with the Columbus Blue Jackets after one season. He is the president of Windsor Spitfires and has decided to return to run the junior team full time.

"While I am disappointed that Bob is leaving our staff, I completely understand and support his decision to put his family first," Arniel said. "He worked extremely hard last season and was a great asset to myself, the coaching staff and our players. For that, I am very thankful and I wish him all the best moving forward."

---John Vogl

Wednesday morning look around the NHL

Happy Wednesday. It's raining. Again. Oh, well, at least the day will be brightened at 10 a.m. when the Foo Fighters presale starts for their HSBC Arena show. Until then, your daily look around the NHL ...

*George Babcock, an assistant equipment manager for the Sabres, heard a crash behind him and saw Mike Kostelnik collapse to the floor while suffering a heart attack. Babcock's father died of a heart attack a few years ago, which heightened his awareness when Kostelnik became unresponsive. Babcock remembered an old CPR class and sprang into action, writes Bucky Gleason. He started cardiac compressions and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until another patron -- a man sitting quietly at the bar who remains unknown -- arrived to help him.

(As an aside, George and I saw the Foo Fighters in Dallas a few seasons back.)

Kostelnik, called "Miracle Mike" by the nurses, is recovering at home. He's convinced he would be dead or would have suffered brain damage without Babcock's quick response. He walked away with a pacemaker and a new lease on life. Babcock walked away with a family of friends for life.

*In a wild, up-and-down game featuring a coming-of-age performance by a 19-year-old rookie, Tyler Seguin spearheaded a five-goal second period with two goals and two assists to lead the Bruins to a 6-5 win in Game Two of the Eastern Conference finals, writes the Boston Herald.

*San Jose captain Joe Thornton tried to get the Western Conference finals off to a raucous start when he asked gritty Vancouver Canucks forward Ryan Kesler to drop the gloves right off the opening faceoff.

"Why not?" Thornton said Tuesday, confirming he made the invitation to Kesler. "Let's fight. Let's start the series off with a bang."

It didn't happen. Instead, the Canucks rallied in the third period for a 3-2 win Sunday night. San Jose is trailing in a series for the first time this postseason and will have a chance to get even tonight in Game Two in Vancouver.

*The Buffalo Sabres insist they are just investigating everything, trying to find ways to improve the organization under owner Terry Pegula. It appears one improvement would be to reunite with the Rochester Americans.

*Justin Regier, son of Buffalo Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier, has earned playing privileges on the Canadian Tour. He shot 74 in Tuesday's U.S. Open regional qualifier, putting him in a playoff with Nic Mazze of Caledon East, Ont., for the last of four spots in sectional qualifying. But his chance to advance vanished when his tee shot on the second playoff hole clipped a tree and doomed him to bogey.

*The family of Derek Boogaard, the New York Rangers forward who died last week in Minnesota, is asking for donations to be made to Defending the Blue Line in his memory, in lieu of flowers. Defending the Blue Line is a nonprofit organization created by soldiers with the spirit of keeping hockey alive for the children of our nation's military heroes.

*Flyers forward Dan Carcillo has been suspended without pay for the first two games of next season for confronting officials during this year's playoffs.

---John Vogl

Sabres' interest in Amerks intensifies

The Buffalo Sabres have been looking at all aspects of their organization, including their minor-league situation and a possible return to Rochester, and a reunion with their longtime affiliate is getting closer.

Sabres owner Terry Pegula has had talks to purchase the Amerks, a source told The Buffalo News today. The Associated Press quotes a source as saying the Sabres have signed a nonbinding letter of intent to purchase the American Hockey League club.

Jason Chaimovitch, the AHL's vice president of communications, told The News a sale would require the approval of the AHL board of governors, and the group has not been approached to examine any transactions.

The Sabres told The News today that neither team President Ted Black nor General Manager Darcy Regier had anything to add to their recent comments. Black said last week the Sabres are investigating numerous aspects of their organization. Regier pledged his support for the Portland Pirates, who reached a long-term extension of their affiliation with Buffalo in March 2010. Regier said the Sabres were interested in keeping the partnership.

"This has been a great relationship," Regier told the Maine Hockey Journal. "The city is terrific. There are no negatives; I guess you point to the geographical issue as the only one. Again, when you look at the job everyone has done here, it’s been a great relationship for us.

"The only place it comes in is maybe my ability to see the team play or some of the staff, or on call-ups and stuff like that, but that’s the constant within the league anyway, with the exception of very few teams. ... Right now our relationship remains with the Portland Pirates."

Amerks owner Curt Styres was elusive today when contacted by the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, which recently reported two NHL clubs have approached the Amerks to purchase the team.

"The only thing I can say is that the Rochester Americans will be playing next season," Styres told Democrat and Chronicle reporter Kevin Oklobzija, who also asked if Styres has sold the Amerks or was in serioius negotiations to sell. Oklobzija said Styres would only repeat the previous statement, adding, "I hope the sun is shining in Rochester tomorrow."

The Sabres were affiliated with Rochester for 29 seasons before moving to Portland in 2008-09.

The Associated Press reports the Sabres do not have an out clause in their deal with the Pirates. Chaimovitch told The News that theoretically an NHL team could own one club and be affiliated with another. That, however, would seem to make little sense.

---John Vogl

Where should an NHL team relocate?

Well, Winnipeg is back in the news as a possible NHL destination. I've made my position clear that the city wouldn't top my list, but here's your chance to weigh in. All these cities have popped up in relocation/expansion talks during recent years. Pick one.

---John Vogl

Tuesday morning look around the NHL

Happy Tuesday. Guess what? It's still cold and rainy. That's almost as much of a shock as Winnipeg being included in NHL relocation rumors, so that's where we'll start ...

*Word is out that True North Sports and Entertainment is in negotiations with Atlanta Spirit to buy and relocate the Atlanta Thrashers for the coming 2011-12 season, the Winnipeg Free Press reports. The talks are not preliminary and the Free Press has learned the NHL is working on two schedule drafts for next season -- one with Winnipeg and another with Atlanta.

*The initial thought of Winnipeg Free Press columnist Doug Brown when he heard that the Coyotes bailout had suddenly transitioned to the Atlanta Thrashers clearing house sweepstakes was whether Winnipeg residents should brace themselves and start digging fox holes before the next volley of insolent player remarks start raining down on them again.

(I don't know if Thrashers players will say anything negative, but a few writers might. Trading Atlanta for Winnipeg? That's almost as lopsided as Stephane Beauregard for Dominik Hasek, especially for a guy who used to work in Georgia. Oh well. On the bright side, Buffalo will move up the list of least-appealing NHL road cities to visit, behind Newark, Detroit and Winnipeg.)

*Atlanta Journal Constitution columnist Mark Bradley asks, Does this franchise merit saving? "They’ve had 11 seasons, three more than the Flames did. They set up shop in a new arena and rode a wave of good will. They capitalized on none of it. If/when they leave, it won’t be because Atlanta failed the Thrashers. It will be because the Thrashers failed Atlanta."

*There is no definitive word on whether Bruins center Patrice Bergeron will play at all during the Eastern Conference final against the Lightning, let alone dress for tonight’s Game Two.

*Damian Cristodero of the St. Pete Times writes that Dwayne Roloson's eight straight playoff victories tie him with Hall of Famer Jacques Plante, who did it in 1969 with the Blues, for most by a goalie 40 or older. Roloson needs two more wins, not necessarily in a row, to tie former Red Wings goalie Dominik Hasek for most in a playoff season by those goalies of a certain age.

Roloson, 41, can pass Plante tonight against the Bruins in Game Two of the Eastern Conference final at TD Garden.

*The Calgary Flames have dropped the interim tag from general manager Jay Feaster's title, and they signed forward Curtis Glencross to a four-year, $10.2 million deal.

*One of my favorite Buffalo News co-workers of all time -- heck, one of my favorite people of all time -- has made her debut at Maybe someday the weather will be nice, Miss Taylor Van Ness.

---John Vogl

Take your pick: Eastern Conference finals Game Two

Monday morning look at the NHL

Happy Monday. Before your look around the NHL, just some words to remember from Brandon Lee in "The Crow": It can't rain all the time.

*Officially, the Vancouver Sun writes, it will go into the books as a third-period comeback win for the Vancouver Canucks. But really, its seeds were sown late in the second period when the Canucks buzzed all around San Jose goalie Antti Niemi for what seemed like an eternity.

They didn't score during one of the longest goal-mouth scrambles you'll ever see (the video is below), but the game changed right there. When it was over, the Canucks had a 3-2 win in the opener of the Western Conference final and the Sharks were exhausted.

*The San Jose Mercury News writes this wasn't exactly a case where the Sharks coughed up a third-period lead and let a well-deserved victory slip away.

No, Game One of the Western Conference finals Sunday night was one where the Sharks seemed more surprised that they held the lead before two goals 79 seconds apart by defenseman Kevin Bieksa and center Henrik Sedin sent them to a 3-2 defeat at the hands of the Vancouver Canucks.

"There's nights when we lose our legs, but our minds are still pretty sharp. I didn't think that was the case tonight," Sharks coach Todd McLellan said. "It started with the ears and worked all the way through the body. We were like dogs chasing cars down the freeway. We weren't catching anybody."

*The Boston Globe's Kevin Paul Dupont, one of the biggest fans of Wegmans ever, says clearly, this isn’t Montreal. And sure as a slap shot it’s not the Flyers. The Bruins, now one giant step toward extinction in the Eastern Conference finals after Saturday night’s humbling 5-2 loss to Tampa Bay on Causeway Street, look as if they’ll have to change parts or approach if they hope to rub out the Lightning and make it to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since 1990.

*Sabres Edge legend Sean Bergenheim is making himself known everywhere in the hockey world with a stellar playoff for Tampa Bay.

*Derek Boogaard's family has donated his brain to researchers who will check for damage that might have resulted from his career as an NHL enforcer. The News' Bob DiCesare writes the role of tough guys must be examined in wake of death of 28-year-old.

*In the latest chapter of hockey’s classic Nordic rivalry, Finland demolished Sweden 6-1 in the gold medal game of the 2011 IIHF World Championship. Petteri Nokelainen scored the first of five third-period Finnish goals, and it stood up as the winner.

---John Vogl

NHL conference finals: Take your pick

The NHL conference finals start tonight, with Boston hosting Tampa Bay in Game One of the Eastern Conference. Vancouver hosts San Jose on Sunday in the Western Conference opener.


Finland's highlight-reel goal helps eliminate Russia

Finland knocked off Russia today at the world championships, riding its 3-0 victory into the finals against Sweden on Sunday.

Finland's Mikael Granlund stole the show, carrying the puck on his stick from behind the net and shooting it lacrosse-style past the Russian goaltender for the first goal of the game.

---John Vogl

Friday afternoon look around the NHL

Happy Friday. We usually do this in the morning, but the day moves a little slower after former Sabres-writing cohort Tim Graham and I get together for some sodas, as we did Thursday night for Sharks-Red Wings Game Seven:

*The Buffalo Sabres have mailed their season-ticket renewal forms, and the recipients will notice something familiar: a 5 percent price increase. If fans want to spend even more, they can buy a travel package to see the team play in Europe.

*The San Jose Mercury News writes the Sharks took a big step toward shedding their reputation as playoff disappointments Thursday night. And so did Patrick Marleau.

With Marleau scoring what turned out to be the deciding goal in an intense and tightly-contested seven-game series, San Jose avoided a spot in the NHL hall of shame by beating the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 and advancing to the Western Conference finals for a second consecutive year.

*The Detroit Free Press writes Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom said he’ll take a little time to decide on his future. He’s deciding whether to retire or play another season. He’s 41, but is coming off a great playoff performance that saw him contribute four goals and eight points in 11 games, with all four goals coming during the Wings’ second-round series against the Sharks.

*Guy Boucher needed just one word to describe Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas: Enigma.

"He's shown that he's the best throughout the regular season and now in the playoffs he's shown the same," the Tampa Bay Lightning coach said. "I don't plan on him giving us any freebies, whatsoever. He doesn't have many weaknesses. I guess it's making everybody scratch their heads about what to do, including myself."

Thomas and the Bruins will host Tampa Bay in Game One of the Eastern Conference finals Saturday night.

*Even though Manny Malhotra still can't play for the Canucks, his surprise return to the ice Thursday provided a pick-me-up to his Vancouver teammates.

Out with a career-threatening eye injury since being hit by a deflected puck on March 16, Malhotra skated with the team for the first time since being hurt as the Canucks began to prepare for the Western Conference finals against the San Jose Sharks.

*Sweden overcame a 1-0 deficit in the second period with a furious rally to defeat the Czechs 5-2 this afternoon at Orange Arena. The win gives Tre Kronor the first spot in Sunday night’s gold-medal game.

*The president of Hockey Canada says two years without a medal at the IIHF World Hockey Championship is "totally unacceptable."

*Ken Hitchcock is ready to step behind a NHL bench again.

Despite the disappointment of seeing his Canadian team sent home from the IIHF World Hockey Championship with a quarterfinal loss to Russia, the veteran coach proved something to himself during the tournament.

"For me it's all about building teams," Hitchcock said after Canada's 2-1 loss to Russia on Thursday night. "If I get the chance I'm very confident now that I can build a good team."

*The Thrashers are for sale, and their future in Atlanta is tenuous at best, according to an Atlanta TV station that spoke with a team owner. Meanwhile, ESPN says NHL commissioner Gary Bettman refuted reports Thursday that an announcement was imminent on the sale and relocation of the Thrashers to Winnipeg.

*The New York Islanders have locked up another young forward for the next five years. The club announced today that Michael Grabner has agreed to terms on a five-year contract.

*The Winter Classic is coming to Philadelphia and Citizens Bank Park, according to the Philly Daily News.

*And for your sprinkling of news about the world champion San Francisco Giants, courtesy of the Santa Cruz Sentinel: About 200 billboards sprung up in Los Angeles on Thursday with police sketches of the two men who beat Giants fan Bryan Stow outside Dodger Stadium. The billboards -- which publicize a $100,000 reward for information leading to an arrest -- were donated by the billboards' owner, Lamar Advertising Co. Another 100 billboards with the attackers' sketches are expected to be put up this week, said Los Angeles police detective P.J. Morris.

---John Vogl

Sabres, AAA selling European travel package

The Sabres are opening next season in Europe, and the team has joined with AAA Western and Central New York on packages that include tickets to an exhibition in Mannheim, Germany, and the regular-season contests in Berlin, Germany, and Helsinki, Finland.

The cost of the package for the two games in Germany is $1,699 per person. It includes six nights accommodations, transportation to all planned events, breakfast daily and special team activities. All applicable taxes and fees are included, but airfare and trip insurance are not.

A flight and ticket to the game in Finland is an optional tour that can be added. Space is limited for both packages.

The tour departs the United States on Oct. 2 and returns to the U.S. on Oct. 9. For more information call (800) 242-4244 or visit

---John Vogl

Russia comes back to eliminate Canada

Russia scored twice in the third period, including the winner by Ilya Kovalchuk with 7:41 remaining, to come back and beat Canada, 2-1, at the world championships.

Jason Spezza opened the scoring for Canada in the second period. Alexei Kaigorodov's short-handed goal tied the game midway through the third, setting up Kovalchuk to break the 1-1 deadlock.

Marc-Andre Gragnani's highlight was knocking the puck away from Alex Ovechkin on a late one-on-one.

The semifinals will feature Russia playing Finland and the Czech Republic battling Sweden.

---John Vogl

Take your pick: San Jose or Detroit?

Sabres' season-ticket prices rise 5 percent

The Sabres have announced their season-ticket plans for the 2011-12 season, and the price is going up approximately 5 percent. The package includes 40 regular-season games (one will be played in Europe and is excluded) and two discounted preseason games.

The price per game ranges from $23 in 300 Level III and IV to $92 in the 200 Club. Full package prices range from $940 to $3,730, up from $902 to $3,608. The Sabres also raised prices 5 percent last season.

The Sabres' said their average season-ticket price of $44.85 is $16 cheaper than the league average and ranks 23rd in the National Hockey League. Season-ticket holders will be receiving their renewal packages via mail over the next week. A 10 percent deposit is required by June 20 to secure the current seat location.

Level     Preseason/Game     Regular Season/Game     Package     Last Season/Package Increase
200 Club     $25.00     $92.00     $3,730.00     $3,608.00 ($88)     $122.00
200 Ends     $25.00     $75.00     $3,050.00     $2,911.00 ($71)     $139.00
100 Pref. Rink     $25.00     $87.00     $3,530.00     $3,403.00 ($83)     $127.00
100 II Rink     $25.00     $70.00     $2,850.00     $2,747.00 ($67)     $103.00
100 III Rink     $25.00     $58.00     $2,370.00     $2,255.00 ($55)     $115.00
100 Pref.     $25.00     $69.00     $2,810.00     $2,665.00 ($65)     $145.00
100 Level II     $20.00     $54.00     $2,200.00     $2,091.00 ($51)     $109.00
100 Level III     $15.00     $41.00     $1,670.00     $1,599.00 ($39)     $71.00
100 Level IV     $15.00     $36.00     $1,470.00     $1,394.00 ($34)     $76.00
300 Level I     $15.00     $41.00     $1,670.00     $1,599.00 ($39)     $71.00
300 Level II     $10.00     $30.00     $1,220.00     $1,189.00 ($29)     $31.00
300 Level III     $10.00     $23.00     $940.00     $902.00 ($22)     $38.00
300 Level IV     $10.00     $23.00     $940.00     $902.00 ($22)     $38.00

---John Vogl

Inside the NHL -- Live Chat

Flyers had little left for round two

I had my suspicions about this one all through the four straight games the Flyers lost to the Bruins, three of which they looked completely outclassed. It seemed like the Flyers had absolutely nothing left for Boston after the seven-game grind against the Sabres, while the Bruins didn't have nearly the same trouble summoning energy after their seven-game first-rounder against Montreal.

Turns out I was on to something.

In this story, several Flyers speaking on locker cleanout day admitted the series against the Sabres took a lot out of them both mentally and physically.

“I think that the Buffalo series may have taken more out of us than a normal seven-game series,” said Flyers defenseman Sean O’Donnell. “They are physically and emotionally exhausting, there was a lot of ups and downs there. We came back a lot, I think looking back on that seven-game series, it seemed more like a nine- or 10-game series.”

There are plenty of other issues percolating around the Flyers in the wake of their quick second-round exit.

---Defenseman Chris Pronger will have back surgery on Thursday while several other players went under the knife on Wednesday. The most noteworthy was captain Mike Richards, who had a torn ligament in his wrist that clearly rendered him ineffective in both rounds. 

---Speaking of Richards, CSNPhilly's Tim Panaccio, the longtime Flyers beat writer, put together this story where coach Peter Laviolette admitted he's still working on his relationship with Richards. The Flyers' captain is a pretty churlish sort most of the time with the media and, based on his Twitter account, he wasn't happy with the story. Panaccio had this response.

---Flyers owner Ed Snider agrees with everyone who watched the team in the playoffs: They need to find a No. 1 goalie, whether it's Sergei Bobrovsky or an outsider, and stick with him. 

Said Snider: "... Either one of the goalies we have has to step up in training camp, or we have to make improvements to make sure it happens. But we are NEVER going to go through the goalie issues we’ve gone through in the last couple of years again."

---Mike Harrington

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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |