Following an off day Sunday, the Sabres were back on the ice at The Northtown Center in Amherst for practice on Monday and received a welcome bit of news – Jason Pominville
has passed his neuro-psych test and has been cleared to play. The test was the final hurdle toward his return to the lineup after he suffered a concussion on Oct. 11, causing him to miss the last nine games.
“He’s full go and fully anticipating playing on Wednesday (vs. Boston),” Head Coach Lindy Ruff said.
Pominville, who has scored at least 20 goals in each of the last four seasons, is eager to rejoin his teammates in a game situation.
“Not really being able to help the team is frustrating,” he said. “Now that I feel back a part of this, it’s definitely fun.”
was given Monday off after experiencing tightness in his lower body and receiving treatment over the weekend, but is expected to return to the ice on Tuesday for practice.
“Ryan’s hurting a little bit,” Ruff said following practice. “He was feeling a little tight, just didn’t feel quite right this morning so we gave him the morning off but fully anticipate him practicing tomorrow.”
With Miller off for the day, Sabres Goaltending Coach Jim Corsi strapped on the pads and took part in Monday’s practice, manning the crease opposite Patrick Lalime. Lalime started in goal on Saturday at Dallas as Buffalo played the second half of a back-to-back set and stopped 37 of 41 shots in a 4-0 defeat.
With my play, I think it needed to be better and I’m going to continue to work hard to try and make it better. It’s disappointing when I am out of the lineup and I can’t help when things are going wrong - Defenseman Craig Rivet
Captain Craig Rivet, who was a healthy scratch for both games over the weekend, will be back in the lineup. After a two game absence, the captain is determined to improve his play and help the team.
“With my play, I think it needed to be better and I’m going to continue to work hard to try and make it better,” he said. “It’s disappointing when I am out of the lineup and I can’t help when things are going wrong".
“I’m going through a tough time right now. I’m not playing as well as I can. But, let me tell you, I am going to work my butt off to try and get better.”
Ruff called the decision to hold his captain out of the lineup “gut-wrenching” and added, “If you’re going to make easy decisions in tough times you’re not going to get anywhere.” 11/1 - Craig Rivet Podcast
The Buffalo coaching staff shuffled its forward lines on Monday, as Derek Roy
centered Jason Pominville
and Jochen Hecht
while Tim Connolly skated between Thomas Vanek
and Patrick Kaleta
. Rob Niedermayer had Drew Stafford
and Tyler Ennis
on his wings and Paul Gaustad skated with Cody McCormick
and Mike Grier.
“It was time to just shuffle it all up,” said Ruff. “We decided this morning we’ll breathe a little new life into everybody and with Pommer coming back, we’re going to look for that line to be a key line for us.”
Forward Luke Adam
, who has played in two games for the Sabres this season, has been named the Reebok/AHL Rookie of the Month for October after recording 13 points (six goals, seven assists) in nine games with the Portland Pirates.
Adam, who was drafted by the Sabres in the second round (44th overall) of the 2008 Entry Draft, made his NHL debut Oct. 26 at Philadelphia.
Pominville’s return to the lineup two games after an injury to Nathan Gerbe
, who suffered a broken jaw when he was hit in the face by a slap shot in Atlanta on Friday. While Gerbe participated in Monday’s practice wearing a protective shield over his jaw, Ruff said the forward would be out of the lineup for a couple weeks and is practicing in a non-contact role.