On this week's edition of WBFO's Behind The Bench, Buffalo Sabres reporter Bill Hoppe talks about the much-hyped first matchup between Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel and this week's trade deadline, which saw forward Jamie McGinn shipped to Anaheim for a draft pick.

Courtesy NHL.com

As young hockey prospects gather in Buffalo this week hoping to impress National Hockey League teams, the city is achieving several firsts as it hosts the NHL's Scouting Combine inside the HarborCenter and First Niagara Center.

WBFO File Photo / WBFO News

The Buffalo Sabres have locked up last place in the NHL for the season.

'Behind The Bench': The philosophy behind losing

Mar 26, 2015
Photo from Bill Hoppe's Twitter feed.

Two of the worst teams in the National Hockey League play in Buffalo Thursday night. The Sabres take on Arizona at First Niagara Center.  In this week's edition of Behind the Bench, Sabres beat reporter Bill Hoppe tells WBFO's Eileen Buckley it should be an interesting matchup.

Sabres deal Neuvirth on trade deadline day

Mar 2, 2015

Monday marked trade deadline day in the National Hockey League.  WBFO'S 'Behind The Bench' Sabres beat reporter Bill Hoppe says the Buffalo Sabres have traded Goalie Michal Neuvirth to the Islanders for Chad Johnson.


On this week's edition of 'Behind The Bench," Buffalo Sabres reporter Bill Hoppe shares his thoughts on a busy day at First Niagara Center which saw some familiar faces traded away.


The Buffalo Sabres and Winnipeg Jets pulled off a blockbuster trade Wednesday that sent two of the Sabres' highest-profile players to the Western Conference. Late in the day, the team also traded its starting goaltender.

WBFO’s Behind the Bench spotlights Sabres action

Jan 8, 2015
Bill Hoppe / WBFO News

A new weekly segment on WBFO focuses on the Buffalo Sabres. 'Behind the Bench' provides enlightening and lively analysis on Sabres developments both on and off the ice.

Sabres start training camp with positive attitude

Sep 18, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

The Buffalo Sabres have opened training camp. Veteran players reported to First Niagara Center for routine testing and physicals early Thursday morning.

Chris Caya/WBFO News

The National Hockey League announced Monday that the league's annual scouting combine will be held in Buffalo in 2015 and 2016. 

WBFO File Photo / WBFO News

The Buffalo Sabres have chosen forward Brendan Lemieux with the first pick of the 2nd round in the NHL draft.

Sabres legend Hasek elected to Hockey Hall of Fame

Jun 23, 2014
File photo

Buffalo Sabres great Dominik Hasek is among six people selected as the Hockey Hall of Fame's Class of 2014.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO News

The Buffalo Sabres just can't seem to catch a break in what has been a season of suffering.  The Sabres lost the lottery held in Toronto Tuesday night to determine which of the non-playoff teams would get the top draft pick in the NHL draft this June.


The NHL trade deadline has come and gone and the Buffalo Sabres were busy, as expected.

WBFO File Photo / WBFO News

Just one day after the Buffalo Sabres pulled off one of the biggest trades in team history, fan favorite Pat LaFontaine announced that he is leaving his post in the front office.

Chris Caya/WBFO News

Top young hockey talent from across the nation will be playing in Buffalo the next two years. The Sabres and First Niagara Center will be hosting USA Hockey's All-American Prospects game in 2014 and 2015.

Tuesday's Sabres game postponed

Jan 7, 2014
WBFO News file photo by Eileen Buckley

The NHL has postponed Tuesday night's game between the Buffalo Sabres and the Carolina Hurricanes because of this week's winter storm.

WBFO File Photo / WBFO News

The NHL lockout is now officially over.

The players' union ratified the Collective Bargaining Agreement on Saturday and a necessary Memorandum of Understanding was agreed to as well. Training camps can now open and the schedule for a shortened season has been released. The Sabres play their first game next Sunday, hosting the Philadelphia Flyers at 12:30 in the afternoon.

Tickets for games will be on sale beginning Monday and Tuesday of this week.

Hockey-dependent businesses welcome NHL's return

Jan 7, 2013
File photo

Business owners and employees of Buffalo bars and restaurants are breathing a sigh of relief with news that the National Hockey League and its players have reached a tentative deal on a new collective bargaining agreement.

NHL agreement reached

Jan 6, 2013
WBFO File Photo / WBFO News

Multiple sources are reporting that the NHL lockout could be over.

A tentative agreement has been reached on a ten year collective bargaining agreement.

Details are still being negotiated and the agreement is yet to be signed into effect.

NHL games canceled through January 14

Dec 20, 2012

The NHL has wiped out all games through Jan. 14, and if it needs to make any more cancelations, the entire season could be the next thing to go.

Lockout delays start of NHL season

Oct 4, 2012

The start of the NHL's regular season has now been pushed back by the lockout.

The league canceled the first two weeks of the 2012-13 season, which was scheduled to begin next week Thursday with four games. In all, 82 games were wiped out through October 24.

Despite negotiating regularly throughout the summer, the NHL and NHL Players' Association have been unable to make much progress in collective bargaining talks. The lockout is into its 19th day and the two sides currently don't have any negotiating sessions scheduled.

NHL announces cancelation of preseason games

Sep 19, 2012
WBFO News file photo

The National Hockey League has announced the cancelation of the 2012 preseason schedule through Sept. 30.  

The NHL says the cancelation of the schedule was necessary because of the absence of a Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NHL Players’ Association and the NHL.

In addition, the 2012 Kraft Hockeyville preseason game, scheduled for Oct. 3 in Belleville, Ontario, has been postponed to 2013.  

As a result, the following Buffalo Sabres games have been canceled: Wednesday, Sept. 26 against the Bruins and Friday, Sept. 28 against the Maple Leafs.

Stalled labor talks threaten start of NHL season

Sep 13, 2012
WBFO News file photo

With the deadline less than three days away, there are growing signs an NHL lockout may be unavoidable.
No progress was made in New York yesterday when the league the players' union met for the first time in 12 days.
Although each side tabled an offer dealing with the major issue of money, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said there's ``very little movement, if any'' in the union's proposal.

Bettman meets in New York  with the league's Board of Governors Thursday afternoon.