The Sabres who played in Monday's 2-1 win at Washington were held off the ice today in HSBC Arena and instead simply did dryland training. The others practiced, came off the ice for a break and then scrimmaged. The Sabres host Toronto Wednesday night in HSBC Arena and the game lineup will be announced Wednesday morning.
Patrick Lalime played the entire game in goal Monday so it's a good bet that Ryan Miller will get his second start of the preseason Wednesday. Coach Lindy Ruff was happy with his team's play Monday, especially on the defensive end as the Capitals went 0 for 5 on the power play and were limited to 20 shots overall. And it was a good Washington lineup too, as Alexander Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and Mike Green all played among other regulars.
"Our penalty killing was excellent," Ruff said "The five-minute power play (when Paul Gaustad got a major for sticking up for Jeff Cowan) we gave up one shot. Three other power plays they didn't get a shot. Pat Kaleta had nine blocked shots in the game. The effort was real good, the desperation ... was good. We've worked hard on doing things differently. The guys have bought in and the defensive effort was good."
The Sabres made got the roster down to 33 with 16 cuts announced late Tuesday afternoon. No surprises. Big draftees like Tyler Ennis, T.J. Brennan and Dennis Persson all headed to Portland. The Pirates open training camp Friday and play an exhibition game Saturday against Lowell. So the Sabres have just a few more cuts after their weekend games at Montreal and Toronto.
The big decisions -- what to do with Tyler Myers, Tim Kennedy and Nathan Gerbe -- have yet to be made and almost certainly won't be until after the exhibition schedule is completed. In today's session with the media, however, Ruff had high praise for Myers' last two games and Kennedy's work at center and as a penalty killer in Washington. No way to read into that just yet.
Henrik Tallinder played 19 minutes in his first game of the preseason and Ruff liked the work of his embattled defenseman. You can read Tallinder's thoughts in Wednesday's paper.
Those Sabres playing in Wednesday night's game should be on the HSBC Arena ice in the 10 a.m. range with the rest going on shortly thereafter. Both sessions are open to the public.
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