The Sabres Report - February 20, 2017

Clunker aside, Sabres happy with how month has gone   

Buffalo News:

‘It typically takes 95 points to secure a playoff spot, which means the Sabres (26-24-10) will have to put up a .750 points percentage the rest of the way.’

Mike Harrington: Lots of 'Showtime' as Hawks dominate   

Buffalo News:

‘This was an old-fashioned butt kicking.’

Sabres Notebook: Fishing for points; Fedun clears waivers   

Buffalo News:

‘Buffalo is in the middle of a packed Eastern Conference, but it has played the most games (60). The other teams will catch up this week, giving the Sabres a more accurate gauge of where they really stand.’

Quick hits: Blackhawks 5, Sabres 1   

Buffalo News:

‘Buffalo announced its second straight sellout with 19,070 tickets sold. Probably one-third of the crowd was wearing Chicago jerseys.’

Sabres fall to Blackhawks, still begin bye feeling good   

Olean Times Herald:

‘The Blackhawks, perhaps the NHL’s model franchise, hammered the Sabres for the 11th straight time (0-9-2). They haven’t beaten the Blackhawks since a home victory Dec. 11, 2009.’

Matt Moulson moving around Sabres lineup   

Olean Times Herald:

‘The problem for Moulson has been getting out there. The three-time 30-goal scorer had averaged just 11 minutes, 40 seconds an outing and skated under 10 minutes in 16 of the last 22 games entering Sunday.’

Monday's Chicago Coverage   

SabreSpace.com:

Win over Sabres shows Blackhawks may not need major move at trade deadline (Chicago Tribune)
Blackhawks worse off when they get a lot of rest vs. no rest (Chicago Tribune)
Sunday’s recap: Blackhawks 5, Sabres 1 (Chicago Tribune)
Photo gallery (Chicago Tribune)
Blackhawks dominant top to bottom in rout of Sabres (Chicago Sun Times)
Hossa comfortable with third-line role as Hawks seek balance (Chicago Sun Times)
Blackhawks cruise past Sabres, 5-1 (Arlington Heights Daily Herald)
Photo gallery (NHL.com)
Photo gallery (Buffalo News)

Kane leads Blackhawks to 5-1 win in Buffalo homecoming   

AP:

‘”We did too much sitting back, playing in our own zone,” Eichel said. “We didn’t play aggressive enough. We gave them too much room and the puck ended in our net.”‘

Kane sets scoring mark as Blackhawks top Sabres   

The Sports Xchange:

‘”We’ll forget about this one. It’s unfortunate,” Lehner said. “You know what, we’ve been playing good hockey, and we can’t get away from ourselves here for one game. After the break, it starts again. We’ve got to string games together, and I think we’re going to do that, I think we have the ability to do that and get back in the race.”‘

Sabres demote D Fedun to AHL affiliate   

The Sports Xchange:

‘In 20 AHL games this season, Fedun had 17 points (four goals, 13 assists) and 17 penalty minutes.’

Sabres' rebuilding efforts creating bond between veterans and youth   

SI:

‘“Each player is different,” says McCabe. “Certain guys are gonna have their same role, like Eichel and Sam Reinhart, two guys that are gonna be relied upon as a top-six forward. For a lot of young guys, like myself, you have to find your role. It does change a little bit, with the coaching staff and how they expect you to play and what they see you as. You’re just trying to stick around, make the team and force their hand. When you figure out what your role is, you really have to buy into it; otherwise you’ll find yourself in the minors pretty quick.”’

Blackhawks Cruise in Buffalo 5-1   

WGR-AM:

‘The win ended a three-game winning streak for Buffalo and extended Chicago’s victorious streak over the Sabres to 11 games.’

From The Locker Room: Sabres-Blackhawks   

WGR-AM:

‘”It’s a long time away from playing, it’s a long time from being on the ice. We have to be ready coming out of the break to play our best hockey. Have a break, put your feet in the sand a little bit. But also take care of yourselves, get a workout in because it comes quick right after the break.”‘

5 Observations: Blackhawks take down Sabres 5-1   

WKBW-TV:

‘Whenever a goaltender allows five goals he deserves some of the blame, but he wasn’t the Sabres biggest problem on Sunday. Three of Chicago’s goals were direct results of missed assignments from Sabres skaters.’

Potential assets for the Sabres as they approach trade deadline -- #3 Brian Gionta   

WKBW-TV:

‘If Gionta decides he wants to keep playing after this year the Sabres could do something similar to what they did with Matt Moulson — trade him and then resign him in the offseason. Making a move like this could ruffle some feathers in the locker room, and if the Sabres keep winning games it may not be a bad idea to keep Gionta around unless the return is ‘worth’ it.’