By Mike Harrington
As is usually the case, Lindy Ruff wouldn't give the media any big hints on the lineup for tonight's game against the Boston Bruins. But the signs are pretty clear on defense: Robyn Regehr is back in, T.J. Brennan will be a scratch and Tyler Myers will watch again from the press box.
At forward, Mikhail Grigorenko said he's been told to take the warmup but doesn't know if he'll play. Matt Ellis will be a scratch -- and either Ellis or Brennan are likely to get put on waivers today so Regehr can come off injured reserve. (Noon update: TSN is reporting Ellis has been put on waivers; the Sabres are certainly hoping he clears so he can go to Rochester)
Regehr suffered a high ankle sprain in the Jan. 27 game at Washington and has missed the last seven games, one reason the Sabres have been so poor in their defensive zone."Robyn was probably defending as well as anybody when he went out of the lineup," Ruff said. "He has a history of being a good defender, playing against the top line. ...When I break down the opportunities against us on the ice and who's responsible for them, he's been one of the lowest. He's been our most solid defender."
Regher said the Sabres' blueliners have to do a better job at retrieving pucks in the defensive zone and moving them quickly. And they have to not lose coverage on the front of the net as well.
Regher was most interesting when asked about Myers. Ruff said both he and Regher have had long talks with the suddenly scratched Sabre in recent days.
"It's just a matter of focusing on his game," Regehr said. "When things aren't going as well as you hope as a player -- and there are stretches like that where you go thorugh some rough times and your confidence is down and you don't feel you can do the things you want to -- you just have to bring it down a level or two to the basics. Say, "I'm going to do these four or five things out there tonight. That's what I'm going to focus on and that's it.'
"Once you do that, you starting gaining a little bit of momentum, a little bit of confidence in yourself. And you start building your game back up again.
. ... Sometimes a guy's worst enemy is himself because he gets down. It's happened to me."
Click below to hear audio from Regehr and Ruff