By John Vogl
TORONTO -- Ted Nolan is willing to cut Linus Omark some slack for his subpar debut with the Sabres. Omark played against Boston on Saturday without the benefit of a practice after getting acquired from Edmonton, and he missed Monday's meeting with Phoenix due to the flu.
Nolan won't give the forward any extra rope starting with tonight's game in Toronto.
"We’ll give him the benefit of the doubt the first time with jetlag and getting to a new team and having the flu," Nolan said in Air Canada Centre. "But after this, he’s got to play with a lot more energy."
Omark (who said his first name is pronounced "Lean-us") took an early penalty and was minus-1 in 12:57 of ice time against the Bruins while playing a fourth-line role. He'll skate alongside center Ville Leino and wing Marcus Foligno tonight. All three players missed the Phoenix game because of illness.
"Hopefully, I can stay healthy now and go from here," said Omark, who finally got a chance to practice with the team today. "I’ve got to work hard. When the chance comes, I’m going to take it. I can just work harder. I had a bad start. Now I’ve been sick, and I’ll keep going for now."
Cody Hodgson will miss his third straight game with a wrist injury, while center Johan Larsson has been sent back to Rochester. Alexander Sulzer will be the healthy scratch on defense. John Scott will be in the lineup and could get power-play time again.
"A lot of power-play goals, it’s just shooting at the net and creating a screen," Nolan said. "There’s no bigger guy that we have on this team."
Ryan Miller will start in goal for the Sabres, while Jonathan Bernier will be in net for the Leafs.
"I’m excited to play," Omark said. "Hopefully. I can start this game good. We’ll see."