The Sabres are understandably edgy about their schedule, which had them start late and then sit around for five more days before they host Phoenix here Thursday night. They've been on the ice for a combined total of nearly 3 1/2 hours over the last two days in an effort to stay sharp, including a 90-minute workout Tuesday in the frozen tundra of the Pepsi Center (Memo to the Amherst Rec Commission: There's gotta be a way to put SOME heat in the place, right?)
How tough is it to sit and watch? Montreal plays Tuesday at Calgary and Wednesday at Vancouver. If the Canadiens win both, they would move to 4-0 -- and already push the Sabres seven points out of the Northeast Division lead after just one game of their season!
As we sit here on a Tuesday night, Alexander Ovechkin already has six points and three Capitals teammates have five. Eight other NHL players have four points. Only three Sabres got a point in Saturday's loss to Montreal (Connolly from Roy and Rivet). Bizarre scheduling. Of course, as Lindy Ruff points out, the Sabres will be griping soon enough about not having enough off days.
Here's some other news from around the league:
---Milan Lucic of the Bruins signed a three-year extension Tuesday night. Three years, $12.25 million. The guy is a bruiser. If he starts scoring goals, you can call him Cam Neely II.
---What's up with Roberto Luongo? He got pulled in Monday's loss to Columbus that dropped the Canucks to 0-3. He's got a 4.55 GAA and putrid .820 save percentage so far. The Jackets, in fact, scored four goals on four straight shots against him.
---The Blackhawks are experimenting with Patrick Kane on the penalty kill.
---The Canadiens lost Andrei Markov in their opener and Ryan O'Byrne for eight weeks with a knee injury suffered here Saturday. So they signed Marc-Andre Bergeron to fill a spot on the blueline Tuesday night.
---Meanwhile, the Oilers are sticking behind Nikolai Khabibulin after their new goalie committed an horrendous last-minute gaffe to cost his team a game Saturday against the Flames. I totally missed this one. Check it out.
taggedNHL | Sabres