The Buffalo Sabres are going with a relatively inexperienced lineup for their first preseason game Sunday evening.
While many players could likely end up in the American Hockey League with the Rochester Americans, that could certainly change with a strong showing in the preseason. Sabres coach Ted Nolan cited Mikhail Grigorenko as an example of a player that has opened the coaches’ eyes in practice and they will now see how he reacts to a game situation.
"There could be a few ticketed [for Rochester], but there’s also a few that are on the bubble," Nolan said. "There are a couple spots on this team to be won and I don’t believe in somebody on the team that deserves to be losing his job but if someone takes his job, that’s a different thing.
"That’s what healthy competition is all about during the preseason. I don’t buy into the assumption that everybody’s ticketed to a certain place. That’s why you play the game."
The Sabres take on the Washington Capitals at 5 p.m. on Sunday from Verizon Center. The game can be seen live on MSG and on the NHL Network for those outside of the Buffalo/Rochester/Syracuse market. It can also be heard on ESPN 1520 in Buffalo.
Nathan Lieuwen will start in goal and will likely play the entire game, according to Nolan.
No one will will the "C" for the Sabres against Washington. Mike Weber, Matt Ellis and Andre Benoit will serve as alternate captains.
44 Nicolas Deslauriers - 23 Sam Reinhart - 33 Joel Armia
37 Matt Ellis - 84 Philip Varone - 22 Johan Larsson
74 Vaclav Karabacek - 25 Mikhail Grigorenko - 65 Brian Flynn
72 Luke Adam - 20 Zac Dalpe - 17 Torrey Mitchell
61 Andre Benoit - 55 Rasmus Ristolainen
6 Mike Weber - 5 Chad Ruhwedel
51 Nikita Zadorov - 24 Tyson Strachan
50 Nathan Lieuwen
35 Andrey Makarov