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Numminen out indefinitely after face surgery

NHL.com @NHL

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) -Buffalo Sabres defenseman Teppo Numminen is out indefinitely after having surgery Sunday to repair a fractured bone in his face.

Numminen was struck in the face Saturday by a second-period shot from Carolina defenseman Tom Gleason. The shot appeared to be deflected. Numminen fell to the ice with both hands covering his face, but he was able to skate off under his own power.

He played eight more shifts, but didn't return for the third period.

"He feels good, but it's just kind of a freak accident," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said.

The 40-year-old Numminen had played in all 45 games this season after missing all but one last year following heart surgery. He scored his second goal of the season Saturday against the Hurricanes before getting hurt. The two tallies lead all Buffalo defensemen.

Numminen becomes the second Sabres defenseman in five days to be sidelined for an extended period. Andrej Sekera sustained an ankle injury Wednesday against Chicago and is out at least two weeks.

The Sabres were already carrying eight defensemen on their active roster, so they won't need to call anyone up from Portland of the AHL. Nathan Paetsch will take Numminen's spot in the lineup.

The Sabres (23-17-5) begin a six-game road trip Monday night at Florida.

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