by Amy Moritz
They took to the ice wearing different color practice jerseys, a departure from the previous coaching regime which placed all forwards in white and all defensemen in blue.
But it wasn't just the line-based jersey colors which were different. The hour-long practice for the Buffalo Sabres under Ted Nolan was high-tempo, fast-paced and demanding.
"There’s a ton of energy. It was hard work today," Cody Hodgson said. "There was a lot of stuff that was new to us but we battled hard. It definitely was a good day."
"Obviously Coach Nolan, he demands a high work ethic," Matt Moulson said. "Everyone’s accountable for that, no matter how young you are or what position you play. He demands hard work. ... I thought it was a great practice. It was pretty hard when we were moving out there. It was a good tempo and we'll try to bring that to the game."
The adage "practice like you play" came to mind while watching the Sabres run through intervals at intensity while working on creating offense.
The message was, "shoot the puck. Drive the net. Play a little gritty. That’s the kind of stuff," Hodgson said. "Goals aren’t easy to come by in this league so when we get our chances, make sure we bear down. What happens in practice will happen in a game. If we can all bear down, make plays it will happen in games."
The few lineup notes that came out of Nolan's post-practice press conference:
- Zemgus Girgensons will move to center, a position he has not played for the Sabres this season. During practice, he worked on a line with Tyler Ennis and Steve Ott.
- Nolan would talk with president of hockey operations Pat LaFontaine about the status of Patrick Kaleta. Kaleta has been with the Rochester Americans after clearing waivers. The demontion came after Kaleta came off a 10-game suspension. In four games with the Amerks, Kaleta has a goal and an assist with no penalty minutes.
Related content from the Sabres Edge blog:
- The Patty & Teddy Show: All your links to a wild day of change in Sabreland
- Video: Vogl & Harrington on Sabres' big changes
- Video: Nolan's remarks at news conference
- Video: Pegula's remarks at news conference
- Video: LaFontaine's remarks at news conference
- Photo gallery: Pat LaFontaine through the years
- Photo gallery: Ted Nolan through the years
- The News' archives: Stories about Pat LaFontaine
- The News' archives: Stories about Ted Nolan
- Audio: Players' reaction after first practice with Nolan
- Lindy on firings: 'You have to win games at home'
- Canadiens decline commment on possible Sabres inquiry on Dudley
- Original story following news conference
- Review news conference through News writers' tweets