No. 1 overall draft pick, Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin headlines preseason matchup
Hockey returns to NBC Sports in the coming days, highlighted by the 2018 Kraft Hockeyville USA contest featuring 2018 No. 1 overall draft pick Rasmus Dahlin and the Buffalo Sabres against Artemi Panarin and the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday, Sept. 25 (7 p.m. ET), on NBCSN, at Clinton Arena in Clinton.
NBC Sports' preseason hockey coverage begins this Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. on NBCSN, when the Calgary Flames face off against the Boston Bruins live from Beijing, China, as part of the 2018 NHL China Games.
This year marks the fourth season of the Kraft Hockeyville USA campaign, whose mission is to help build better hockey communities across the country. This will be the Sabres' second Kraft Hockeyville USA appearance - Buffalo faced the Carolina Hurricanes at Lakeview Arena on the shore of Lake Superior in Marquette, Michigan, in 2016. Clinton Arena in Clinton (New York) won this year's competition, which includes $150,000 in rink upgrades.
NBCSN's telecast will honor the rich hockey history of the local Clinton community, highlighted by a first intermission essay from Mike "Doc" Emrick on the history of the Clinton area and the generation of hockey players who have played locally.
The Sabres are led by second-year standout Jack Eichel; newcomer Jeff Skinner, a three-time 30-goal scorer who was acquired during the offseason; and Dahlin, the No. 1 draft pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. Columbus, led by Panarin, was eliminated by the eventual Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals in Round 1 of the Eastern Conference Playoffs this past spring.
Brendan Burke (play-by-play) and Emmy Award-winning "Inside-the-Glass" analyst Pierre McGuire will call the action live from Clinton Arena. In addition, Kathryn Tappen (host) and Jeremy Roenick (analyst) will also be on-site to provide studio coverage and updates throughout the game.