Jan 28, 2013, 2:26 PM EST
Losers of three straight, the Buffalo Sabres (2-3-0) are likely to get leading scorer Thomas Vanek (muscle strain) back in their lineup Tuesday versus Toronto.
“I’m optimistic about [Vanek] playing tomorrow,” Sabres head coach Lindy Ruff said today, per the Buffalo News.
Vanek, who tallied a remarkable nine points in his first four games, is also hopeful his absence will be limited to one game.
“I felt a lot better today than I did yesterday,” he said.
As for the future of 18-year-old center Mikhail Grigorenko, the Sabres have yet to decide if they’ll send him back to junior or keep him and use up a year of his entry-level contract.
One factor could be the health of center Ville Leino (lower-body injury), who Ruff would only put “in the OK category” when asked for an update.
Leino has yet to play a game this season and, according to Ruff, “hasn’t skated anything of substance now for quite a while.”
- Discuss: Blackhawks score big on Rivalry Night on NBCSN 9
- Crosby: If I had to guess Thornton’s suspension, I’d say 10 games 40
- Cowen gets two-game suspension for hit on Girgensons 12
- Rangers must consider Callahan’s injury history in contract talks 13
- The Chip ‘n’ Chase: Outrage over hockey violence, Gary Bettman is a happy man, Darryl Sutter is awesome, and more! 30
- Report: Isles coach Capuano not seen as problem 11
- Rivalry Night on NBCSN: Flyers challenge top-ranked Blackhawks 18
- Update: Ryan Callahan out 4-6 weeks with MCL sprain 15
- Four goals: Ovechkin wills Caps to stunning shootout win vs. Bolts 62
- Bettman: No decision on expansion, but they’re listening 13
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (182)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (156)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (138)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (132)
- Orpik suffers from concussion, including memory loss (118)