Mar 11, 2014; Buffalo, NY, USA; Nashville Predators center Paul Gaustad (28) and Buffalo Sabres center Zenon Konopka (24) fight as linesman Steve Miller (89) and referee Chris Lee (28) look on during the game at First Niagara Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres Daily: NHL Officials CBA, Russians & More

It may not be October yet, but we’re certainly getting closer. Hard to believe it’s already September 2 and in just a few short weeks, NHL teams will come together to start training camps and preseasons as the regular season grows closer. The Sabres host their first home preseason game in just 21 days!

A comment from the president of the KHL leads some to believe Russian NHLers may leave to play in the KHL next season. [Calgary Sun]

The Memorandum of Understanding between the two leagues expires on June 30, 2015. This enforces both leagues to honor their respective player contracts. The agreement was renewed last month, but if it’s allowed to expire next June, could that mean players like Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin go overseas? The Calgary Sun brings up the idea (and a poll regarding) a “mass exodus” of players to the KHL, but even a few more here and there leaving could leave some big gaps in the NHL. Can you imagine if Malkin, Ovechkin or even Pavel Datsyuk left? Surely the NHL would recover, but it’d be a big loss.

As the NHL season grows closer, negotiations are currently ongoing for a new CBA – not for the players, but for the referees. [Too Many Men On The Site]

This is one thing a lot of people may not think about. The past few years have been all about the collective bargaining agreements for the players, and the ensuing lockout that happened as a result of those troubles. But the referees also need to get paid, and their CBA is currently expired.

Back in 2010, negotiations for a new referees CBA lasted into the season. While this may not be the top thing on any fan’s mind heading into the season, it is something that should be followed, as it will likely have some impact on the ice.

In Buffalo, as the Sabres season grows closer and the HARBORCENTER construction continues, there’s a new partnership that was just announced that will bring even more training to the new complex. The Niagara Junior Purple Eagles will partner with HARBORCENTER this season, according to a report by SportsMedia101.

The teams are still based in Niagara Falls, but this new partnership will allow them to participate in programming and on-ice training that was developed by HARBORCENTER staff including former NHLers Martin Biron, Kevyn Adams and Adam Mair.

It’s unbelievable how much HARBORCENTER is already doing for the city of Buffalo and surrounding communities before it’s even opened. I can’t wait to see the finish product as we head downtown for Sabres games and check out all the events there, from the retail space to the hotel, to local college hockey games and more.

Finally, Caitlin over at Frozen Futures takes a closer look at Sabres prospect Nikita Zadorov, what he did last season and where he could wind up this year.

Could Zadorov make the Sabres squad, or will he be returned to the Knights? Right now, it’s more a question of whether or not there’s a spot for him in Buffalo to even compete for. Losing Christian Ehrhoff but bringing in guys like Josh Gorges and Andre Benoit, plus you’ve still got youngsters like Jake McCabe and then the mainstays in guys like Tyler Myers and Mike Weber and a slew of prospects in the AHL, it might be tough for Zadorov to get a spot — but we’ll see as the Sabres season grows ever closer.

Tags: Buffalo Sabres Nhl Referee Cba Nikita Zadorov

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