By John Vogl
The Olympic break is over for most of the Buffalo Sabres, including coach Ted Nolan. The team practiced today in First Niagara Center, its first time on the ice since Feb. 6.
Nolan led the team despite coaching Latvia in Russia on Wednesday.
"We’ll rest in the summertime," he said.
Rookie Zemgus Girgensons, who played for Latvia, was in the arena but will get a few days to recuperate.
"He deserves a couple days’ rest," Nolan said. "No bang-up, just probably fatigue and time-zone difference. ... He’s a young kid, so we’ll probably give him two, three days off."
The Olympic break gave the Sabres time to get healthy. Matt Moulson, Tyler Myers and Cody McCormick should all be ready to play Tuesday when the Hurricanes come to Buffalo. The return of Moulson is particularly good news because the pending unrestricted free agent is one of Buffalo's top assets heading toward the March 5 trade deadline.
"I was able to just work out and do treatment every day, get back healthy," said Moulson, who suffered his injury Jan. 30 in Phoenix. "It was just kind of like a cartilage thing, probably the same as a broken rib, and it just takes time and rest. Luckily, it came right before the break so I didn’t miss too many games."
Sabres goaltenders Ryan Miller (United States) and Jhonas Enroth (Sweden) are still at the Olympics, so Canisius College sophomore Adam Harris and former Morrisville netminder Chris Azzano manned the creases. Nolan said Miller or Enroth will start against the Hurricanes even though they both could be in Russia through Sunday's gold-medal game.
"One of them is going to have to play for sure," Nolan said. "We’ll see which one had the best sleep on the plane coming home. Whichever one, he’ll play."
To hear Nolan's chat, including his thoughts on Sochi and whether the NHL should participate in the Olympics, click the audio file below.
taggedMatt Moulson | Ted Nolan