Eichel scores in shootout, Sabres beat Devils 4-3
Buffalo Sabres forward Jack Eichel (9) carries the puck past New Jersey Devils forward Yegor Sharangovich (17) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021, in Buffalo, N.Y. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)BUFFALO, N.Y. – Jack Eichel scored in a shootout, Linus Ullmark made 31 saves and the Buffalo Sabres beat the New Jersey Devils 4-3 on Saturday. Victor Olofsson, Tobias Rieder and Eric Staal also scored to help the Sabres improve to 3-0-2 in their past five games. AdJanne Kuokkanen, Ty Smith and Andreas Johnsson scored for New Jersey in former Sabres coach Lindy Ruff’s first trip to Buffalo since taking over the Devils this offseason. Buffalo’s top free-agent acquisition assisted on two goals, tying Eichel for the team lead with nine points in eight games. RUFF’S RETURNRuff served as a Rangers assistant and Stars head coach since being fired by the Sabres in 2013.
Shorthanded Capitals beat Sabres 4-3 in home opener shootout
(AP Photo/Nick Wass)WASHINGTON – Jakub Vrana had a goal and an assist, Vitek Vanecek made 24 saves through overtime and the short-handed Washington Capitals beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-3 in a shootout Friday night in their home opener. Vanecek was perfect in the shootout to pick up his second victory of the season as defenseman John Carlson scored the shootout winner. Buffalo rookie Dylan Cozens scored his first NHL goal on a top-shelf snipe past Vanecek in the second period. Eric Staal and Riley Sheahan each scored his first goal since joining the Sabres. Linus Ullmark made 29 saves and was spotless in the shootout until Carlson beat him.
NHL offseason moves influenced by coronavirus' impact on cap
Zdeno Chara is no longer in Boston after the Bruins captain signed with Washington. And the Sabres made an even bigger splash in free agency by landing 2018 NHL MVP Taylor Hall in October. Hall, for example, signed a one-year, $8 million deal with Buffalo by realizing the free-agent market was going to be tight. Oilers general manager Ken Holland chalked it up to the new economic realities facing the NHL. “It’s salary-cap related, which is related to the pandemic, which has given us a hard, flat cap for the foreseeable future,” Holland said.
Minnesota Wild trade Dubnyk, Donato to Sharks for picks
(AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker, File)The Minnesota Wild traded goalie Devan Dubnyk and forward Ryan Donato to the San Jose Sharks in two separate deals on Monday, continuing their makeover under general manager Bill Guerin. For Donato, the Wild received a third-round pick in the 2021 draft. The Sharks sent their fifth-round pick in the 2022 draft for Dubnyk and also received Minnesota's 2022 seventh-rounder in return. The Wild now own two 2021 picks from the Penguins, who traded next year's first-rounder to Minnesota for forward Jason Zucker. Donato, who is the son of former Bruins stalwart Ted Donato, has 29 goals and 28 assists in 130 career NHL games.