Levi, Anderson, Thompson & Rousek

The Buffalo Sabres have a tricky highway forward in the event that they wish to make the playoffs, particularly with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Florida Panthers holding the Eastern Conference wild-card spots. But if they will begin successful down this important stretch, they could nonetheless have an opportunity to make a late push.

Related: NHL Attendance Leaves a Lot to Be Desired…Or Does It?

That stated, the Sabres additionally want the Penguins and the Panthers to falter. Even in the event that they win most of their remaining video games, with out assist from different groups, there’s no probability. The truth is that the highway will probably be bumpy.

Item One: Craig Anderson Is Day-to-Day

Craig Anderson won’t be enjoying for some time. He’s thought of day-to-day with an upper-body injury and has been absent from some current practices for upkeep causes. 

Craig Anderson, Buffalo Sabres (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Anderson has performed 25 video games this season, with a document of 10-11-2, a 3.07 goals-against common, and a .908 save share. While the Sabres should not devoid of goalies – they nonetheless have Eric Comrie, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, and Devon Levi – Anderson has been their finest netminder when wholesome.

Item Two: Newcomer Devon Levi Gets Tonight’s Start

The Sabres are going to see what they’ve in Devon Levi tonight. The highly-touted goalie prospect will make his NHL debut towards the New York Rangers (from “Devon Levi’s NHL debut in goal for Sabres will come Friday night vs. Rangers,” Buffalo News, 30/03/2023).

Related: Sabres Getting Strong however Underrated Season From Cozens

Levi is taken into account a key a part of the Sabres’ future. He had a stellar NCAA profession, significantly throughout the 2021-22 season, when his document was 21-10-1, with a tremendous goals-against common of 1.54 and a save share of .952. Tonight received’t be straightforward. The Rangers will probably be a tricky first opponent and sit comfortably in third place within the Metropolitan Division with 98 factors.

Item Three: Tage Thompson Is Game-to-Game with Upper-Body Injury

Tage Thompson missed his first recreation this previous week and may miss one other. He at the moment leads Buffalo in scoring with 44 targets and 45 assists (for 89 factors) in 72 video games. 

Tage Thompson Buffalo Sabres
Tage Thompson, Buffalo Sabres (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Thompson will probably be a game-time resolution. He performed by way of the damage six days in the past towards the New York Islanders; nonetheless, he couldn’t go the following recreation towards the Montreal Canadiens. If he can’t play, Casey Mittelstadt will possible heart the Sabres’ potent first line with Alex Tuch and Jeff Skinner on his wings.

Item Four: Jordan Greenway Will Also Be a Game-Time Decision

The Sabres’ Jordan Greenway can be struggling an upper-body damage, and he too won’t be capable of play tonight. That stated, he was training on the workforce’s third line, which suggests there’s an opportunity. 

Related: Sabres News & Rumors: Comrie, Thompson, Rousek & Dahlin

Before his damage, Greenway had two factors in his earlier 31 video games and solely eight factors on the season. He may finish the season with the bottom level whole of his five-year NHL profession.

Item Five: Mattias Samuelsson Is Also a Game-Time Decision

Defenseman Mattias Samuelsson can be a game-time resolution towards the Rangers. He is rehabbing an upper-body damage. Samuelsson aggravated his damage on March 11 however improved sufficient to be thought of for recreation motion.

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So far this season, Samuelsson has a purpose and 7 assists (for eight factors). He additionally has 89 hits and has blocked 80 pictures in 48 video games.

What’s Next for the Sabres?

Although the Sabres suffered a disappointing shootout loss on Monday night time towards the Canadiens, there was excellent news for the long run. Their 23-year-old prospect Lukas Rousek made the Sabres trustworthy rise up and take discover together with his spectacular NHL debut.

Related: Sabres News & Rumors: Levi, Thompson, Skinner & Cozens

Rousek scored a purpose and added an help, which places him in some elite firm amongst Sabres gamers. In 1999, Maxim Afinogenov was the final participant to perform that feat in his debut. Afinogenov was an thrilling and gifted participant who had fairly a profitable NHL profession. That augurs properly for Rousek’s future.

Lukas Rousek Buffalo Sabres
Lukas Rousek, Buffalo Sabres (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Sabres’ head coach Don Granato commented that Rousek already has a strong understanding of the workforce’s techniques and a really feel for the sport. He has already been reassigned to the American Hockey League’s Rochester Americans. However, there’s an opportunity he is likely to be recalled earlier than the tip of the season.

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