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Vanek possibility to return as Sabres visit Jets

by Patrick Williams /

WINNIPEG -- The Buffalo Sabres and Winnipeg Jets meet Tuesday at MTS Centre with Eastern Conference playoff positioning at stake.

After the Sabres' morning skate at MTS Centre, Buffalo coach Ron Rolston said leading scorer Thomas Vanek, who has missed six games with an upper-body injury, is a possibility to return against the Jets. Rolston also indicated that Ville Leino likely will not return during the regular season because of an upper-body injury.

Winnipeg finally has come to a relative lull in its schedule and has used the time to heal assorted bumps and bruises. Forward Anthony Peluso (hand) participated in the club's morning skate. Jets coach Claude Noel said Peluso will need additional time before his is deemed ready to play. Center Jim Slater also remains out and his return is not near, according to Noel.

Ryan Miller will make his fifth consecutive start in net for the Sabres. Opposing him will be Winnipeg’s Ondrej Pavelec, who will make his 37th appearance.

Here are the projected lineups for the Sabres and Jets:


Steve Ott - Cody Hodgson - Nathan Gerbe

Marcus Foligno - Tyler Ennis - Drew Stafford

Luke Adam - Kevin Porter - Brian Flynn

John Scott - Jochen Hecht - Patrick Kaleta

Christian Ehrhoff - Tyler Myers

Mike Weber - Andrej Sekera

Mark Pysyk - Adam Pardy

Ryan Miller

Jhonas Enroth

Injured: Ville Leino (upper body), Alexander Sulzer (lower body), Thomas Vanek (upper body)


Andrew Ladd - Bryan Little - Blake Wheeler

Evander Kane - Olli Jokinen - Kyle Wellwood

Eric Tangradi - Alexander Burmistrov - Mike Santorelli

James Wright - Aaron Gagnon - Chris Thorburn

Tobias Enstrom - Dustin Byfuglien

Ron Hainsey - Zach Bogosian

Mark Stuart - Grant Clitsome

Ondrej Pavelec

Al Montoya

Injured: Nik Antropov (lower body), Anthony Peluso (hand), Zach Redmond (thigh), Jim Slater (hand)

Scratched: Arturs Kulda, Derek Meech, Antti Miettinen, Paul Postma, Jacob Trouba

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