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Stanley Cup Final

Sabres Camp: Vanek excited for Europe trip

Saturday, 09.17.2011 / 1:27 PM

By Lindsay Kramer - NHL.com Correspondent / Super Saturday

BUFFALO -- The normal excitement of preseason carries a little extra juice for Buffalo forward Thomas Vanek.

The Sabres will begin their schedule with contests in Germany and Finland. Vanek, a native of Austria, predicts his team will be stirring up a buzz with its European tour.

"It's going to be great, not just for myself and my family but for the fans in general," Vanek said after his first practice of the season Saturday morning. "The game has grown so much over there."

Vanek will enjoy the hoopla, but won't rely on the semi-homecoming alone to put any more jump into his game.

"If there is a button like that (to play harder), I think I'd turn it on all the time," he said.

I've been getting frustrated lately, and the only thing keeping me sane was the team winning and other people stepping up and scoring. Then you just kind of let it go and realize you can end the series with one shot, that frustration goes away for a brief moment, and that's what happened.

— Montreal forward Max Pacioretty after scoring the series-winner in Game 4 -- his first career playoff goal -- to eliminate the Lightning and send the Canadiens into the second round