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Sharpen Up: September 8, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak /

It's been some time since we've been able to say this… It's a game night! The Prospects Challenge starts today at HarborCenter, where some of the top prospects from the Sabres, Bruins, Devils and Penguins organizations will go head-to-head in a round-robin tournament. 

Boston and Pittsburgh open up the action at 3:30 today and then Buffalo and New Jersey will square off at 7 p.m. 

You can purchase tickets for each game right here. We'll also be live streaming the Sabres' games each night.

Here's what you need to know. 

Click here for Buffalo's roster. It includes many names you know like Justin Bailey, Alexander Nylander, Nicholas Baptiste, Brendan Guhle, Hudson Fasching and C.J. Smith. 

Video: TAYLOR: After Practice

"The biggest thing I think about this tournament is these guys get a head start on everybody else," Rochester Americans coach Chris Taylor, who will be behind the Buffalo bench for the Prospects Challenge, said after Thursday's practice. "You're going into camp playing three games, one practice, you've got some structure going, you're getting into a routine.

"The other guys, they're scrimmaging but it's not the same. So I think these guys got a head start and they have to realize they've got a head start and take advantage of it."

Bailey and Nylander spoke with the media yesterday as well. 

Video: BAILEY: After Practice

Nylander was listed at 180 pounds during this summer's Development Camp, and he says he spent the rest of the warm months training and working out. 

More from Jourdon LaBarber's practice report, which includes line combinations and other roster news:

Taylor raved about Alexander Nylander's day at practice, praising both his work ethic in 5-on-5 battles and the confidence he's showed over the past two days.

"He just looks a little bit more mature, he looks bigger," Taylor said. "Everything about him, he looks confident in what he's doing and how he's handling himself. Just talking to him, I said to him, 'Just be ready.' He goes, 'I'm ready' … He really wants to make an impression on everybody and he really wants to be a Buffalo Sabre."


Video: NYLANDER: After Practice

The Sabres take the ice for their morning skate at 10:30 a.m. We'll have a full report and game preview for you later today. 

Also stay tuned for some Winter Classic news at noon. Dan Dunleavy is in New York for a press conference and we'll have full coverage for you later today.

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