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Sabres healthy scratch Leopold for first time in three years

Feb 19, 2013, 12:39 PM EDT

JordanLeopold

After a poor outing in Sunday’s 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh, defenseman Jordan Leopold has been dropped from the Sabres lineup for Tuesday’s game against Winnipeg.

“I just haven’t got off to a good start,” Leopold told the Buffalo News. “I’m trying to keep the confidence up, trying to get into plays, trying to make things. It’s the little things, not big things that have been getting me a little bit.

“It’s not the first time I’ve sat and watched a game. You learn from it. It creates a fire underneath you and urgency to get better.”

According to the News, it’s the first time Leopold’s been a healthy scratch in his three years with Buffalo.

The 32-year-old rearguard’s had an erratic start to his season, recording just 1G-3A-4PTS in 16 games while posting a minus-7 rating.

He was blasted for some poor defensive zone coverage on this Pascal Dupuis goal during Sunday’s loss:

“That’s an easy read for me,” Leopold explained. “Having that one sneak by, there’s nobody to fault but myself. You look at it and learn from it. Lindy’s got to make his choices with lineup. We got 8 D here. Sometimes you find yourself out.

Ruff didn’t have much to say in explaining the decision to drop Leopold from the lineup.

“I expect more out of him. I expect more out of a veteran defenseman. He’s going to have to work hard to get back in,” the Sabres head coach said.

TJ Brennan will replace Leopold against the Jets, paired with fellow defenseman Mike Weber.

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