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Ennis, Kulikov were 'at their best' against Toronto

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

With seven games left in the regular season for the Buffalo Sabres, the remaining time serves as an opportunity for the team to continue to prove to themselves exactly what level they're capable of playing at. They did that on Saturday night, winning 5-2 against a Toronto Maple Leafs team still fighting to maintain a spot in the postseason. 

The same is true on an individual level, particularly for players like Tyler Ennis and Dmitry Kulikov.  Both have dealt with injuries and therefore inconsistency this season and are looking to end on a positive note.

Ennis and Kulikov both enjoyed their first multi-point outings of the season on Saturday, and both returned to significant roles - Ennis on the top line and Kulikov on the top defensive pair - for practice at HarborCenter on Sunday.

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Sabres feed off of rivalry's energy in win over Leafs

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

Being the longest-tenured member of the Buffalo Sabres, Tyler Ennis may be as well-equipped as anyone to discuss the team's rivalry with the Toronto Maple Leafs. It's one that exists in the stands as much as it does on the ice; Toronto fans travel down the QEW to cheer for their team, usually providing a back-and-forth that trickles down onto the ice.

That was as true as ever on Saturday night, with the Maple Leafs coming into town looking to protect their small playoff cushion and the Sabres seeking to play spoiler. Buffalo got the job done, winning 5-2, and a game that began with a mixed crowd cheering back and forth ended with a standing ovation from the Sabres fans with little blue and white left in the building to speak of. 

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Okposo: Sabres need to learn from meeting with Leafs

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

While a lot of the focus for the past two days has been on who won't be in the lineup for the Buffalo Sabres tonight - Rasmus Ristolainen will be serving the first game of his three-game suspension - there will be a handful of players who are returning from their own prolonged absences, too.

Kyle Okposo, William Carrier, Dmitry Kulikov and Justin Falk will all be back in the lineup for the Sabres when they host the Toronto Maple Leafs at KeyBank Center. They'll face a Toronto team that has ascended to third place in the Atlantic Division with points in four of its last five games and is fighting for its first playoff berth in four seasons.

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Sharpen Up: March 25, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

Buffalo and Toronto are set to play for the fourth time this season with the fifth and final meeting coming up on April 3. The last time out, Buffalo defeated the Maple Leafs 3-1 in Toronto back on Feb. 11. Evander Kane scored twice that night and Robin Lehner made 43 saves. 

What's in store for tonight?

Here's what you need to know.

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Sabres react to Ristolainen's suspension

Falk returns from injury

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

For the first time in nearly two full years, the Buffalo Sabres will take the ice for a game without Rasmus Ristolainen in their lineup when they host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night. After that, they'll do it twice more. 

Ristolainen was suspended three games on Thursday for his hit against Pittsburgh Penguins forward Jake Guentzel, a decision that left many of Ristolainen's teammates surprised following practice on Friday.

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HALL: Champions and good causes highlight the week

by Lauren Hall @LaurenHall / Sabres.com

We had a special guest in the building for our home game against Pittsburgh on Tuesday. 

 

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Sharpen Up: March 24, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

The NHL Department of Player Safety handed out a three-game suspension to Rasmus Ristolainen yesterday. Ristolainen was assessed a five-minute interference major and a game misconduct on Tuesday when he hit Penguins forward Jake Guentzel in the first period. 

With Ristolainen set to serve the suspension, it's a good thing the Sabres got some healthy bodies back at practice yesterday.

Here's what you need to know.

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Ristolainen suspended 3 games for hit on Guentzel

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

Sabres defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen has been suspended three games for his hit on Pittsburgh Penguins forward Jake Guentzel, the NHL Department of Player Safety announced on Thursday.

Ristolainen received both a five-minute interference major and a game misconduct for the hit, which occurred at 8:46 of the first period in Buffalo's game against Pittsburgh on Tuesday. A pass intended for Guentzel in the neutral zone had been broken up by Sabres forward Zemgus Girgensons when Ristolainen delivered a hip check on the Penguins forward in open ice.

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Okposo among trio of players to return to practice

Ristolainen awaiting hearing for hit on Guentzel

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

All at once, the Buffalo Sabres looked a whole lot healthier when they took the ice for practice at HarborCenter on Thursday morning. Kyle Okposo, William Carrier and Dmitry Kulikov all practiced with the team for the first time since sustaining their respective injuries. 

Not only that, but - barring any potential setbacks - all three players will practice again on Friday and should be ready to play when the Sabres host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night. 

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Sharpen Up: March 23, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

The Sabres hit the ice at HarborCenter today for practice and we'll have to see who will be joining them. 

Here's what you need to know.

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