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Puck drops for world juniors, Spengler Cup as NHL talks remain non-existent

Pucks are on the ice in Russia and Switzerland. In North America, talks remain on ice.

The first day of the world junior tournament is complete as Finland, Canada, Sweden and host Russia opened with victories in the under-20 competition.

Joel Armia, the Sabres' first-round pick in 2011, had two assists in Finland's 5-1 victory over Latvia. Zemgus Girgensons, the second of Buffalo's two first-rounders this year, has elected to stay with the Rochester Americans rather than play for Latvia.

Mikhail Grigorenko, the Sabres' top pick in June, had an assist in Russia's 3-2 overtime victory against Slovakia. Goaltender Andrey Makarov, signed to a three-year contract by the Sabres in September, served as Russia's backup.

The United States and captain Jake McCabe, picked in the second round by Buffalo in June, play Germany on Thursday.

Meanwhile, in Switzerland, the Spengler Cup is under way. Sabres captain Jason Pominville, former Buffalo forward Jochen Hecht and their Mannheim Eagles play against Canada this afternoon. Tyler Seguin, John Tavares and Jason Spezza are among the NHLers playing for The True North.

For those who remain interested in billionaires and millionaires fighting, the NHL and NHL Players' Association still do not have negotiations planned, according to Yahoo! Sports. Mike Harrington wrote today about Sabres fans keeping their season tickets despite the lockout.

---John Vogl

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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |