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Sabres LW Ville Leino near ready to make season debut from hip injury

Friday, 03.08.2013 / 3:35 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Sabres LW Ville Leino near ready to make season debut from hip injury

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Buffalo Sabres forward Ville Leino could be ready to make his season debut as early as next week after missing the first 25 games with an injury to his right hip.

In ruling out Leino from playing at Philadelphia on Sunday, interim coach Ron Rolston called it a "strong possibility" he could play Tuesday, when Buffalo hosts the New York Rangers.

Leino practiced for a fourth straight day Friday. That's a turnaround from last month, when there were concerns he was going to require surgery.

Rolston ruled out Andrej Sekera from playing Sunday, after the defenceman was hurt in the third period of a 3-2 shootout loss at New Jersey on Thursday. Defenceman Jordan Leopold is close to returning after missing eight games with an upper body injury.

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I don't have a crystal ball. Predicting is a real complicated thing. If we stay healthy, have enough depth and get the good goaltending we think we're going to have, you can go all the way. But a lot of things have to happen. There's going to be a lot of teams that think the same thing. Everyone made deals. We're all are optimistic about where we'll end up.

— Rangers general manager Glen Sather after being asked if he's constructed a team that can win the Stanley Cup before their 4-1 win against the Predators on Monday
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