TRAVERSE CITY, MICHIGAN – Rookie center Sam Reinhart said he’s good to go after two plays in the NHL Prospect Tournament game against the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday that looked like could have resulted in injury.
The second-overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft took a blindside hit from Carter Sandlak along the left wing boards in the defensive zone 5:37 into the second period. While Reinhart was still down on the ice, Brendan Lemieux jumped in to challenge Sandlak. Both Sandlak and Lemieux were assessed roughing minors.
“It’s one of those things where your top-notch forward gets hit the wrong way and I pride myself on being a guy that sticks up for his teammates,” Lemieux said after the game Thursday evening. “I’m definitely going to want to step in there and just let him know.”
Reinhart said after the morning skate that he’s feeling all right for Saturday night and was happy to see his teammates jump in there like that for him when he took that hit.
“Nice to see it from them. From the hit and that standpoint, I felt fine from it,” he said. “I didn’t see him coming, but I got up and no side effects from it.”
Reinhart then appeared to cut a finger midway through the third period. He received treatment and finished the game without incident.
“He’s good. It’s fine. It’s going to be a little uncomfortable, but he’s going to be all right,” coach Chadd Cassidy said. “He just had a little bit of an injury. He fell on his hand and banged it up a little bit, but he’s going to be fine.”
The Sabres play the New York Rangers at 7 p.m. on Saturday. The game can be heard live on ESPN 1520 in Buffalo and will be streaming on Sabres.com’s desktop player. Check out Sabres.com/TraverseCity after the game for a recap and video analysis.