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Sharpen Up: All the Sabres news you need to know on January 8, 2020

Buffalo will practice today before traveling for Thursday's road game against the Blues

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

The Sabres will skate today at KeyBank Center before heading out to St. Louis for tomorrow night's game against the St. Louis Blues. 

Buffalo won't have Jake McCabe for that game due to an upper-body injury, but it looks like forward Michael Frolik will be ready to make his Sabres debut. We'll have updates from practice today.

Here's what you need to know.

 

Tuesday's practice

Video: Tuesday's Practice Report: Pilut Recalled

From the Ice Level Practice Report…

Lawrence Pilut never touched the ice with the Buffalo Sabres at training camp, but it was there he began to make an impression on Ralph Krueger. The coach took note of the defenseman's personality as he worked through the final stages of recovery from offseason hip surgery. 

If camp was Krueger's introduction to Pilut the person, then the team's trip to Sweden in November was where the coach got a firsthand look at the defenseman's skillset. Pilut did not dress for either Global Series contest, but he practiced with the team for the duration of the trip.  

Tuesday marked another opportunity for Pilut, who was with the Sabres for practice once again after earning another recall from Rochester. 

"He's gone down and played really, really well," Krueger said. "We're getting good reports back to us, so we're excited to see him now here again with us in this next phase of development and possibly gonna be seeing him play in the next few games."

Video: AFTER PRACTICE: Ralph Krueger

Pilut's recall was precipitated by an injury to fellow left-shot defenseman Jake McCabe, who will miss the team's game in St. Louis on Thursday. Krueger said the team is optimistic McCabe will be available to play its next game, at home against Vancouver on Saturday.

If Pilut does join the lineup, it will mark his first NHL contest since last season's finale in Detroit. He played 33 games with Buffalo last season, his first in North America, tallying six points (1+5) and averaging 17:25.

His time in Buffalo offered several flashes of the decisive, offensively gifted player who was named the Swedish Hockey League's Defenseman of the Year one year prior. It also served as a learning experience at hockey's highest level. The greates lesson, he says, was the importance of staying mentally fresh through the long grind of the season.

"Just keep that mind fresh all the time," he said. "That's a big thing. I think that's what I worked on a lot. I think I'm ready for that."

Click here to read more. 

During his weekly appearance on WGR this morning, Krueger said that Michael Frolik is in Buffalo and ready to work with the team after completing his immigration process: 

 

Mic'd Up at the Skills Challenge

Video: Mic'd Up at the Skills Challenge

And the jerseys that the team wore during the event are up for auction now. Click here to place your bid.

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