Ted Nolan is taking a ‘less is more’ approach early on


After winning in his return to Buffalo on Friday, Sabres players raved about head coach Ted Nolan giving them a fresh start. Nolan’s coaching assistant Joe Sacco implies to the Buffalo News that he’s not adding too much clutter to that clean slate, either.

“Right now he just wants to try to keep things as simple as possible, not change too much early on,” Sacco said. “That’s just going to add confusion to everything. His message has been pretty clear to the players and the rest of the other coaches. Less is more right now, just letting them go out and play.

For a player who went from promising to troubling like Tyler Myers, a strategy that’s currently about aggressiveness (and living with mistakes) instead of over-thinking things is a breathe of fresh air.

“Ted came in and basically had one-on-ones with every guy in the room,” Myers said. “One of the things he brought up was don’t be afraid to jump up as much as you can. There’s mistakes that are going to be made, and that’s part of hockey. Don’t worry about it. It was a good feeling to hear that.”

Maybe it won’t mean a drastic change in the standings, but it seems like there’s renewed optimism – or at least a little bit more of it – in Buffalo.

WATCH LIVE: Lightning at Red Wings

Henrik Zetterberg, Steven Stamkos
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Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.

Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.

While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.


After healthy scratch, Severson vows to play ‘next 80 games’

Jimmy Hayes, Damon Severson
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Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.

It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.

“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”

Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.

Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.

Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.

“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”