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Leino hopeful of making season debut for Sabres on Sunday; Leopold progressing but no timetable

By John Vogl

SECAUCUS, N.J. -- Ville Leino's long wait to play may come to an end at his former stomping grounds this weekend.

The hip injury that has kept Leino sidelined all season continues to improve, and the Sabres forward said he hopes to return Sunday when Buffalo visits Philadelphia.

"Philly would probably be one of the good options here," the former Flyer said after participating fully in practice in Prudential Center in Newark, where the Sabres face the Devils on Thursday. "I’m having a lot of fun out there. I wish practices would run longer, and that normally doesn’t happen during the season. It’s pretty exciting."

Defenseman Jordan Leopold, who hasn't played since Feb. 17 because of an upper-body injury, does not yet have a timetable for returning to the lineup.

"It’s just not quite there," Leopold said. "Getting close and making progress every day. The good thing is I haven’t taken any steps backward."'

To hear more about practice -- including Ryan Miller's disappointment with the step back the Sabres took Tuesday and Ron Rolston's thoughts on Tyler Ennis (complete with fire alarm in the background) -- click the audio files below.

Ron Rolston

Ryan Miller

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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 |