The Buffalo Sabres
brought 24 players to Europe and could open ther season with this lineup -- minus emergency goalie Drew MacIntyre
, who is here on a roster exemption.
Of those 23 players, Luje Adam might be the biggest surprise. The young forward, taken in the second round in 2008, has taken advantage of some injuries (Jochen hecht
) and suspensions (Brad Boyes
) to really open the eyes of the coaching staff.
During Sunday's practice, Luke centered a line with Thomas Vanek
and Jason Pominville
and could play in that role in Tuesday's exhibition game against Adler Manheim. With Adam in that spot, Drew Stafford
moved up to play on a line with Nathan Gerbe
and Derek Roy
, while Boyes played with Ville Leino
and Tyler Ennis
. The fourth line was a rotating trio of fashioned from four forwards -- Patrick Kaleta
, Paul Gaustad
, Matt Ellis
and Cody McCormick
-- while Hecht took part while wearing a non-contact jersey.
So, can the 21-year old Luke make the Sabres after his first pro season, which saw him score 62 points in 57 AHL games, as well as 4 points in a 19-game cameo with the Sabres?
"Right now, we are still in the evaluation process, you know," Ruff said. Derek (Roy) is coming off injury. We'll take another look at Luke (Tuesday) night. I think he has played well. Brad Boyes
is coming off injury and I thought his last game was his best one. There are players pushing for ice time and position right now."