Lambert leaves Rockets, lands job with Buffalo Sabres

‘“This was a decision that was very difficult to make,” Lambert said in a news release from the Rockets. “I’d like to thank Bruce Hamilton and the Hamilton family and Lorne Frey for giving me an opportunity six years ago to become part of the Rocket family. I would like to thank Ryan Huska, Kim Dillabaugh, Kim Gellert and Ryan Cuthbert for the awesome working environment that was created in the coach’s room. And to all the staff for my first year as a head coach. What a run we had.”’

Sabres hire Lambert as assistant coach

‘Before taking over as head coach in Kelowna in 2014-15, Lambert spent five seasons as an assistant coach with the Rockets for five seasons. The St. Boniface, Manitoba, native began his coaching career with Kelowna immediately after retiring from a 19-season professional playing career.’

Eichel has his first practice wearing the Sabres crest

‘This is Eichel’s first development camp and there are things he’d like to accomplish, “I just will try to get better every day, get more familiar with how things work around here. Coach Bylsma went over with us what he wants us to be doing and it’s just little things like working to become a pro each day.” Eichel added, “Just playing away from the puck and being ready no matter if I have the puck or I don’t, moving my feet when I don’t have it, catching pucks at top speed.”’

Bylsma adds to his staff

‘Dan Lambert is leaving junior hockey to join Dan Bylsma’s staff.’

Sabres’ Eichel center of attention on first day of camp

‘”[The attention] doesn’t stop and he knows that,” Reinhart said. “I didn’t know him before this week, and watching him go through all that draft stuff, he handled it phenomenally. He’s a mature guy and he knows exactly how to conduct himself both on and off the ice. And at the end of the day his on-ice stuff does reflect off the ice as well.”‘

Eichel finds some familiarity in 1st practice

‘“It’s great to have him here,” Eichel said of Rodrigues. “Obviously we went through a lot this year together, played with him, really familiar sitting next to him in the locker room. It’s nice to know somebody that well and have them here to kind of go through this [together.]”’

In his own words: Evan Rodrigues

‘I’ve been skating a little bit – a few times a week – but it’s been the first time in a while at this pace and going as hard as you can. I felt good. I wasn’t gasping for air or anything and it was definitely a good first session with all-new equipment.’

Lambert joins staff as assistant coach

‘Lambert joins the Sabres after guiding the Kelowna Rockets (WHL) to a 53-13-6 record and a Western Conference title in his first season as head coach in 2014-15. The Rockets followed up their regular-season success by posting a 16-3 record in the WHL Playoffs, winning the Ed Chynoweth Cup and earning a berth in the Memorial Cup, where the team fell to the Oshawa Generals (OHL) in the Final.’

Storylines will run deep at Sabres’ development camp

‘Here are some of the non-Eichel issues I’ll be watching for, with the caveat being that the Sabres have not actually announced a roster of attendees, other than to say all the 2015 draft picks are slated to be on hand.’

Sabres’ Varone files for salary arbitration

‘Varone had a pro-rated NHL salary of $595,000 last season and made $62,500 in the AHL. The Sabres tendered him his NHL qualifying offer by last week’s deadline, which would push his NHL salary into the $655,000 range. He’s likely looking for a much bigger salary for the AHL portion of his deal, given the large minor-league salaries the Sabres handed out last week in free agency.’

Carlo Colaiacovo excited for opportunity with Sabres

‘“When Buffalo reached out, it was a feeling of excitement,” Colaiacovo told the Times Herald by phone. “I’m really happy that everything worked out the way that it did.”‘

Sabres have plenty of shiny prospects to showcase beside Jack Eichel

‘The Sabres have perhaps hockey’s best stable of young talent. Here are some other youngsters to watch if they attend. The team hasn’t released a roster yet.’

Buffalo is Ryan O’Reilly’s pay pal

‘O’Reilly is respected for his work ethic, which stacks up with that of anyone in the NHL. Fans, media and, most important, the Avalanche “got” that his contributions go far beyond the simply quantifiable. (No, I’m not stooping to citing analytics, but offering conclusions reached by actually watching him play.) Yet the virtually universal reaction to his departure has been: Good riddance. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a player so respected told so universally to not let the door hit him on the way out.’

Jack Eichel’s work ethic and homespun personality make him a perfect fit for Buffalo

‘In no other time in recent memory has an American hockey player been trumpeted the way Eichel has been over the past year. He has been hailed as a savior for the Sabres, who selected him as the centerpiece of their rebuild. They’re hoping he can help turn around the franchise in a revitalized city that’s starving for a championship. It’s a tall order.’

Armia stunned by deal that saw Sabres ship him to Winnipeg

‘”Of course it was probably hard for me,” the 22-year-old from Pori, Finland said Saturday at the MTS Iceplex after Day 2 of the Winnipeg Jets development camp. “A little bit harder because it was my first trade and that doesn’t happen in Europe a lot.”‘