Author Archives: chrisdierken


The Buffalo Sabres have signed forward Casey Mittelstadt to a three-year contract with an AAV of $2.5 million.

  • Ranked third among Sabres skaters in goals (10) and fourth in points (22) in 41 games played during the 2020-21 season.
  • Recorded 30 points (11+19) in 34 games for the University of Minnesota and was named to the 2016-17 Big Ten All-Rookie Team after his only season of collegiate hockey.
  • Captured bronze medals for Team USA at the 2016 IIHF U18 World Championship and at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship, where he led the tournament in points and was named tournament MVP.


The Buffalo Sabres have signed defenseman Casey Fitzgerald to a two-year contract with an AAV of $750,000.

  • Tied for second among Rochester Americans (AHL) defensemen in goals (2) and tied for third among team defensemen in points (11) in 22 games for the Amerks in 2020-21.
  • Played four seasons for Boston College (Hockey East), where he was team captain for two seasons and was named Hockey East’s Best Defensive Defenseman after his junior season in 2017-18.
  • Won a gold medal with the United States at the 2014 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, the 2015 IIHF World U18 Championship and the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship.


The Buffalo Sabres have signed forward Ryan MacInnis to a one-year contract worth $750,000.

  • Recorded AHL career highs in goals (7), assists (23) and points (30) in 45 games for the Cleveland Monsters during the 2019-20 season.
  • Played three seasons for the Kitchener Rangers from 2013-14 to 2015-16, totaling 180 points (79+101) in 192 career OHL games and serving as team captain during his last season with the team.
  • Captured a bronze medal and recorded three points (0+3) in seven games while representing the United States at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship.


The Buffalo Sabres have signed forward Rasmus Asplund to a two-year contract worth $825,000.

  •  Recorded NHL career highs in games played (28), goals (7), assists (4) and points (11) for the Sabres during the 2020-21 season.
  • Played four SHL seasons with Färjestad BK (2014-15 to 2017-18), totaling 62 points (20+42) in 170 games in Sweden’s top professional league before turning 21.
  • Served as the captain for Team Sweden at the 2015 IIHF U18 World Championship and represented Sweden at the 2016 and 2017 IIHF World Junior Championships.


The Buffalo Sabres today announced the following changes to the team’s coaching and development staffs:

Jason Christie, Matt Ellis and Marty Wilford have been hired as assistant coaches and Justin White has been hired as video coordinator. Assistant coach Mike Bales and video coach Myles Fee will both remain with the team this season.

Adam Mair has been hired as the director of player development and Dan Girardi will remain with the organization in a development role.


“In Marty and Jason, we’ve added two quality people and coaches to our organization. Their experience at multiple levels of pro hockey will be crucial as we implement our vision for this team. We are also excited to bring back Matt Ellis, Mike Bales and Myles Fee, and add Justin White to our group to continue building on the progress of last season. I’m confident in the passion and intensity they will all bring to the rink each day and their ability to get the best out our players and team.”

– Sabres Head Coach Don Granato

Career Highlights:

  •  Holds the ECHL all-time record for coaching wins (667) and has served as a head coach in the ECHL for 18 seasons for the Jacksonville IceMen (2017-2021), Tulsa Oilers (2015-2017), Ontario Reign (2011-2015), Utah Grizzlies (2005-2008) and Peoria Rivermen (2000-2005).
  • Won the Kelly Cup as the ECHL champion and was named Playoff MVP in 2000 during the final year of his playing career for the Don Granato-coached Rivermen.
  • Served as an assistant coach for the Chicago Wolves (AHL) from 2008 to 2010.

Career Highlights:

  • Served as an interim assistant coach for the Sabres last season after being named the team’s director of player development in September 2020.
  • Played in 356 NHL games during his nine-year career for the Buffalo Sabres, Los Angeles Kings and Detroit Red Wings.
  • Spent four seasons working for the Academy of Hockey in LECOM Harborcenter, where he served as a development coach before being named director in September 2019.

Career Highlights:

  • Has spent the last three seasons (2018-19 to 2020-21) as an assistant coach for the Anaheim Ducks after serving as an assistant coach for the San Diego Gulls (AHL) from 2015 to 2018.
  • Began his coaching career as an assistant coach for the Syracuse Crunch (AHL) during the 2011-12 season before serving in the same role for the Norfolk Admirals (AHL) from 2012 to 2015.
  • Had a 14-year pro playing career as a defenseman, including 275 points (47+228) in 539 games during seven AHL seasons.

Career Highlights:

  • Played 615 games during a 12-year NHL career as a forward for the Sabres, New Jersey Devils, Los Angeles Kings and Toronto Maple Leafs after being selected by Toronto in the fourth round (84th overall) of the 1997 NHL Draft.
  • Served as an assistant coach for the Rochester Americans (AHL) during the 2020-21 season.
  • Spent five seasons as a development coach for the Sabres from 2015 to 2020 after serving as the director of player development for Canisius College (AHA) from 2012 to 2014.