Miller tries to deflect pressure on the goalie

‘"So much depends on the team in front of you. In the first 45 games this season [in Buffalo] nothing went wrong. In the next 12 it seemed like a whole lots of things went wrong. You can be thinking you’re playing great and things happen and suddenly maybe you’re out of every play."’

Mental rest on Sabres’ minds at Olympic break

‘"Guys need to get away a little bit — not too far away," Gaustad said. "We’ve got to hit the ground running when we come back. We’re still in-season. We’re still focused. Get our rest and then come back at it."’

Miller the linchpin for inexperienced Americans

‘Ryan Miller is the biggest reason why the Buffalo Sabres sit in first place in the Northeast Division. In fact, the Sabres are built much like this Team USA — a solid foundation complemented by a collection of players in the proper roles, buttressed by superior goaltending.’

Sabres 2009-10 NCAA prospects update

‘Knapp continues to battle fellow sophomore Cody Reichard for ice time. If this were a junior or pro league, the team could trade some of its goaltending to stock other positions. In college though, you work with the pieces you have. Given that the team is ranked No. 1 in the nation, the pieces are pretty good.’

Sabres beat Sharks to end losing streak in time for Olympics

‘“We were consistent,” said Gaustad, who started things at the 5:25 mark with a tuck-in after charging the net. “We kept attacking.”’

Sabres torch Sharks before break

‘"It was good that we could go into the break feeling good," Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller said. "Even though it’s been a tough stretch, feeling good about the way we played tonight against a good team can go a long way.’

Sabres offer rare smile entering Olympic break

‘There is a certain fragility about the Sabres. It has been that way for awhile, ever since the 2005-06 team began to break apart. There’s something missing at the heart of this team, an essential quality that lifts a hockey team through the difficult moments — within a game or a long NHL season.’

Penalty killers come back to life

‘”We’ve had a good read on them in the pregame scout and it’s not just them we’re doing a good job against,” noted winger Jochen Hecht. “A lot of teams have problems against us and that’s why we’re at the top in the league. We’re patient, guys do their jobs and they get rewarded.”‘

Sunday’s San Jose Coverage

Ugly loss in Buffalo sends San Jose Sharks into break for Olympics (San Jose Mercury News)

Sharks’ Olympians will make a quick turnaround in San Jose (San Jose Mercury News)

Photo gallery (SJSharks.com)

Photo gallery (Sabres.com)

Photo gallery (AP)

Sabres beat Sharks to snap 6-game losing streak

‘“That’s the difference in the game,” Sharks coach Todd McLellan said. “If you put one of (the power-play opportunities) in, you’re in good shape. You build it in the game that they’re going to score in the game, but to do that two times in a row really took a lot of life out of us.”’

Buffalo 3, San Jose 1

‘After a scoreless first period, the Sabres tallied three times in the second to create some distance between them and the Sharks.’

Sabres snap skid with 3-1 win over Sharks

‘The win gives Buffalo 75 points and first place in the Northeast Division with a one point lead over Ottawa. The Senators play Sunday against the Islanders. The Sabres are now off for the Olympic break. They won’t play again until March 2 when they face the Penguins.’

Sunday’s Portland Coverage

Pirates recover to keep streak alive (Portland Press Herald)

A long way from Portland (Portland Press Herald)

Phantoms rally falls short in loss (Glen Falls Post Star)

Phantoms’ comeback falls short (Albany Times Union)

Owners, be ready if you come (Albany Times Union)

Pirates hold on for win; extend streak to eight games (Maine Hockey Journal)

Pirates Slide Past Phantoms for Eighth Straight Win (PortlandPirates.com)

Staggering Sabres hope to rally against Sharks

‘“When you’re losing a lot of games in a row, as soon as the other team gets a few goals, there’s that thought creeping in your head, ‘not again,’” Sabres defenseman Toni Lydman said. “But you just have to play through it. It shouldn’t happen. But we’re only human. It does.”’

Frustrated Sabres seek slump solution

‘”When things are going good, if you make mistakes you can usually overcome them. Right now we can’t overcome the mistakes. When you get in a stretch like this, that stuff happens. We just have to continue to try and get a little bit better.”‘