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Grigorenko

Mikhail Grigorenko played his second NHL game this season Saturday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Mikhail Grigorenko knew the Sabres were short one forward and had the Colorado Avalanche, a team led by Hall of Fame goalie Patrick Roy, his former junior coach, coming up on the schedule.

Grigorenko, who played in Tuesday’s 5-1 loss in Winnipeg before going back to Rochester, wanted to get recalled again badly. To his relief, the Sabres summoned the Russian again Saturday morning.

“I was hoping I would get called up, especially that game against Colorado against Patrick,” Grigorenko …

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Mikhail Grigorenko has played one NHL game this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Mikhail Grigorenko knew the Sabres were short one forward and had the Colorado Avalanche, a team led by legendary goalie Patrick Roy, his former junior coach, coming up on the schedule.

Grigorenko, who played in Tuesday’s 5-1 loss in Winnipeg before getting returned to Rochester, wanted to get recalled again badly.

“I was hoping I would get called up, especially that game against Colorado against Patrick,” Grigorenko said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “I saw him … at …

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Mikhail Griogorenko has played one NHL game this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – The Sabres recalled center Mikhail Grigorenko from Rochester this morning.

Grigorenko has played one game in the NHL this season, Tuesday’s 5-1 loss in Winnipeg. The Sabres practiced with only 11 forwards after returning the 20-year-old to the Americans.

The Russian has seven goals and 19 points in 29 games with the AHL club.

The Sabres host the Colorado Avalanche tonight.

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Mike Weber recently underwent knee surgery. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – That forward recall should happen before the Sabres host the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday.

“I hope so,” coach Ted Nolan joked after the Sabres practiced today in HarborCenter.

The Sabres have been practicing with only 11 forwards. They sent center Mikhail Grigorenko back to Rochester following Tuesday’s 5-1 loss in Winnipeg.

Update: Grigorenko is back up.

The defense corps, meanwhile, should be getting healthier. Mike Weber practiced today, his first session since recently undergoing minor surgery on his left knee.

“He’s a quick …

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Canisius College players skate at HarborCenter recently. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Instead of dressing at the First Niagara Center and busing to the Riverside Ice Rink or another local facility Thursday, the Sabres simply put on their sandals or sneakers and walked across the street in their uniforms to HarborCenter, the new $170 million facility that opened earlier this fall.

Practicing outside the First Niagara Center is no longer a hassle. Naturally, the Sabres’ first session inside the sparkling facility had a huge “wow” factor.

“It’s beautiful,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan …

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Mikhail Grigorenko played one game during his recall. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – The Sabres sent center Mikhail Grigorenko back to the Rochester Americans today.

The 20-year-old Russian was pointless in 16 minutes, 42 seconds of ice time in Tuesday’s 5-1 loss to the Winnipeg Jets, his first NHL game since Nov. 27, 2013.

Grigorenko, the No. 12 pick in 2012, has seven goals and 19 points in 27 AHL games this season. The Amerks host the Syracuse Crunch tonight.

The Sabres don’t play until Saturday, so Grigorenko could be summoned again soon. Center …

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Matt Moulson beats Ottawa goalie Robin Lehner for the shootout winner Monday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

BUFFALO – Monday’s exciting 5-4 come-from-behind shootout victory against the Ottawa Senators extended the Sabres’ winning streak to four games. That’s 10 triumphs in their last 13 games. The surging team has rallied from third-period deficits in five of its last six wins.

In one month, the Sabres have morphed from a hapless team destined to finish last again into a legitimate playoff contender.

“We got something special going,” said Sabres center Marcus Foligno, who scored for the third straight game.

No kidding.

Following …

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Chris Stewart has struggled this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Instead of walking into the dressing room following a long skate Tuesday morning, struggling Sabres winger Chris Stewart veered off and undressed somewhere else.

A few minutes later, a staff member wheeled in Stewart’s equipment on a shopping cart and placed it in his locker.

Clearly, Stewart, a healthy scratch for the Sabres’ 1-0 win against the Los Angeles Kings, wasn’t in the mood to discuss his benching.

“All players have to play to the best of their ability,” Sabres coach …

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Nikita Zadorov skates this morning. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Naturally, Russia recently put Sabres defenseman Nikita Zadorov on its preliminary roster for the upcoming world junior championship. The country has nothing to lose by adding the 19-year-old’s name.

The Sabres, of course, can keep Zadorov if they want.

But would they actually let Zadorov, who skates more than 20 minutes some nights beside Rasmus Ristolainen, join his country for the tournament?

“I just read it for the first time myself that he was on the list,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan …

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Mikhail Grigorenko has four goals this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

BUFFALO – Sabres prospect Mikhail Grigorenko needed some time to adjust. Getting demoted to the AHL wasn’t easy. The 20-year-center impressed during the NHL training camp, igniting speculation he could earn a roster spot.

But the rebuilding Sabres wanted the slick Russian to develop in Rochester, where he could receive loads of ice time, so they assigned him to the Americans on Oct. 6.

“It was probably tough a few days,” Grigorenko said Wednesday about acclimating to the AHL again. “It’s a …

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