Ville Leino and Cody McCormick will make the trip to Florida with the Buffalo Sabres for the team’s pair of games in the Sunshine State this weekend.
Both forwards are currently on injured reserve and roster moves will have to be made in order to activate one or both of them.
Sabres coach Ron Rolston said that McCormick is ready to play while they’re still evaluating Leino. Rolston also said that a roster move would be made today but was not ready to announce what it would be.
The Buffalo Sabres can only have 23 players on their active roster and two of their three scratches at the moment are taken up by forwards who cannot play. Patrick Kaleta is serving a 10-game suspension that he is appealing and John Scott has a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety for a check he made Wednesday on Bruins forward Loui Eriksson.
UPDATE: KALETA SUSPENSION UPHELD BY NHL
“It’s two roster spots that are basically with guys who can’t play for you, so sure, it affects things,” Rolston said.
The Sabres play the Florida Panthers on Friday at 7:30 p.m. and the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday at 7 p.m. Jhonas Enroth will start one of those games, according to Rolston.
Also on the injury front, forward Corey Tropp continues to skate with the team, albeit in a red non-contact jersey and a full face shield as he works his way back from a broken jaw. Rolston said he is “on a good path” and they’re waiting for him to be cleared for contact by team doctors.
Rookie Joel Armia, who broke his hand in the preseason on Sept. 25, is not skating with the team, but is making progress as well.
“He’s just in the stages now where he can basically have a stick in his hand and actually stickhandle a puck, that sort of thing,” Rolston said. “He’s close, but he’s still probably a week or two away in terms of doing everything that he needs to do and being confident in it and his hand.”
Even with the team’s 1-9-1 start, Rolston said that he, general manager Darcy Regier and owner Terry Pegula are all still on the same page.
“We’ve had the same plan the whole time in terms of what we talked about and playing young players,” Rolston said. “Again, we’ve committed to that and that’s what we’re doing right now. We have continued to put the young guys in there and going along with the plan that we have.”
26 Thomas Vanek – 19 Cody Hodgson – 65 Brian Flynn
9 Steve Ott – 25 Mikhail Grigorenko – 82 Marcus Foligno
28 Zemgus Girgensons – 22 Johan Larsson – 63 Tyler Ennis
21 Drew Stafford – 8 Cody McCormick – 23 Ville Leino
32 John Scott – 12 Kevin Porter – 36 Patrick Kaleta
78 Corey Tropp (red non-contact jersey)
10 Christian Ehrhoff – 3 Mark Pysyk
61 Nikita Zadorov – 57 Tyler Myers
20 Henrik Tallinder – 4 Jamie McBain
6 Mike Weber – 55 Rasmus Ristolainen
30 Ryan Miller
1 Jhonas Enroth