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NOTEBOOK: RIVET OUT WITH UPPER BODY INJURY

by Erin Pollina / Buffalo Sabres
Craig Rivet (Photo: Getty Images)
Buffalo Sabres' captain Craig Rivet was absent from the Sabres' 2-1 loss Friday night after his upper body injury returned. The defenseman was sidelined for two games the first week of December with the same complications.


“He can’t play his game and I think you have seen that,” Head Coach Lindy Ruff said. “It’s affecting his game so we have to rehab him for a while.”

Ruff did not give a timetable for the defenseman, but noted that the injury was “short-term.”

Rivet has missed a total of eight games this season. He was previously out for two weeks in late October after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, missing five games.



Toni Lydman added his first goal of the season six minutes into the initial frame. The score was the first by a defenseman in 13 games - since Nov. 12 when Henrik Tallinder net the game-winning goal against the St. Louis Blues.

Only three goals have come from Buffalo’s blueline this year, with Jaroslav Spacek claiming the remaining goal Oct. 12 against Vancouver.



The Sabres are currently one score away from their 10,000th goal in franchise history. 

Buffalo entered the season with 9,920 goals and have scored 79 in their first 29 games. Only 10 other NHL teams have scored more all-time.



The Sabres began their annual Winter Clothing Drive tonight. Fans are encouraged to bring new or slightly used winter clothing to HSBC Arena during the following games: Dec. 17 (New Jersey Devils), Dec. 19 (Los Angeles Kings) and Dec. 22 (Pittsburgh Penguins)

Hats, gloves, coats, boots, scarves and sweaters are accepted, as are cash donations. Items are collected at all major entrance points at HSBC Arena and all proceeds benefit the Buffalo City Mission.



QUOTABLE:

"We had a couple opportunities. The pass to [Ales] Kotalik was a great pass. If he gets it up another six inches it’s in the empty net. It’s a great pass. If I yell shoot on that one and he doesn’t score, then you say he should have passed it. It’s a read on where the defenseman is at; has he gapped up good? Is he in the passing lane? If he is then your best chance is shooting it. Get it on goal and give yourself a chance, give the guy going that’s driving to the net a chance for a rebound. But you can’t just yell at them to shoot every time. We have good enough players, and smart enough players, that they have to make that decision on the ice."

~Lindy Ruff on whether the team needs to take more shots

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