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Lieuwen

The Sabres could call on Matt Hackett often down the stretch. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – In less than a year, Sabres prospect Matt Hackett morphed from Ryan Miller’s possible heir apparent into an afterthought, the fifth goalie on the rebuilding team’s depth chart.

Hackett struggled last year in Rochester, posting career-worst numbers. Then the 25-year-old tore up his knee during a late-season recall, shelving him for nine months.

As Hackett rehabbed, Jhonas Enroth and Michal Neuvirth battled for the Sabres’ starting job. In Rochester, Nathan Lieuwen and Andrey Makarov tried to build off of strong …

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Nathan Lieuwen has a scary history of concussions. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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Some sad news out of Rochester, where Americans goalie Nathan Lieuwen will “take significant time off” to recover from the concussion he suffered late last season with the Buffalo Sabres, according to the Democrat and Chronicle’s Kevin Oklobzija.

Lieuwen, who has scary history of concussions, recently told the Amerks he has experienced vision issues all season, according to the paper. A neurologist said his brain hasn’t healed from the April 6 concussion he suffered in Philadelphia.

The 23-year-old said last year he …

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Nathan Lieuwen was with the Sabres briefly. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – The Sabres sent goalie Nathan Lieuwen back to Rochester today.

That could mean goalie Michal Neuvirth, out since suffering a lower-body injury Tuesday, is healthy.

With Lieuwen backing up, Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth made 43 saves in Saturday’s 2-1 win in Washington.

Lieuwen has struggled badly with the AHL Americans this season, going 3-4 with a 3.53 goals against average and .876 save percentage.

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Nathan Lieuwen has struggled this season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Closures from Winter Storm Knife have been blocking the quickest route from Rochester to Buffalo, the New York State Thruway.

So upon getting summoned to the NHL on Wednesday, Sabres goalie Nathan Lieuwen had to find a different path here.

“I kind of got some advice,” Lieuwen said Thursday inside the First Niagara Center.

Armed with a map, the 23-year-old took Route 104, a roadway close to Lake Ontario.

Lieuwen said his trip took about two hours and 45 minutes.

“Tried to get …

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Patrick Kaleta is stuck at home. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – As expected, the Sabres practiced minus one player today, winger Patrick Kaleta, who’s stuck in his Hamburg home with Winter Storm Knife still decimating the area.

Update: Friday’s game against the New York Rangers has been postponed.

“Hockey seems like a very small thing when the city’s going through something that we’re going through right now,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center. “We’re just hoping that not only Kaleta, but everybody gets out of …

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Nathan Lieuwen played seven NHL games last season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – With goalie Michal Neuvirth sidelined by a lower-body injury, the Sabres recalled Nathan Lieuwen from Rochester this afternoon.

Lieuwen has struggled badly with the AHL Americans this season, going 3-4 with a 3.53 goals against average and .876 save percentage.

The 23-year-old has performed terribly – 0-3, 4.91 and .838 – in his last six games. He has been yanked from three of his last five starts.

Lieuwen developed into a strong NHL prospect last season – 17-11-2, 2.34 and .922 …

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Patrick Kaleta impressed the Sabres this training camp. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Patrick Kaleta’s facial injury isn’t as bad the Sabres originally feared, and the winger could miss as little as a month, coach Ted Nolan said Tuesday.

“It’s still serious,” Nolan said inside the First Niagara Center. “It’s not going to be a three-month thing. It’s could be a less-than-month type of thing. So we’re thankful for that.”

Kaleta and forward Johan Larsson were injured early in Sunday’s 3-2 shootout exhibition loss in Toronto. Larsson, Nolan said, is out about 10 …

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Matt Ellis captained Rochester last season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Veteran forward Matt Ellis was among seven players the Sabres sent to Rochester this afternoon.

The Sabres also assigned: forwards Joel Armia and Tim Schaller; defensemen Drew Bagnall and Nick Petricki; goalies Nathan Lieuwen and Andrey Makarov.

Ellis and Bagnall must clear waivers to reach the AHL Americans. Ellis captained Rochester in 2012-13 and last season before earning a 50-game recall.

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Andrey Makarov hasn't played this preseason. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – The Sabres aren’t bringing their ‘A’ squad to Toronto for tonight’s preseason contest against the Maple Leafs, but the lineup features a lot of youngsters and bubble players “that deserve to play,” coach Ted Nolan said.

“Camp’s far from over,” Nolan said this morning inside the First Niagara Center.

First, here are forward lines: Cody Hodgson, Mikhail Grigorenko, Chris Stewart; Zac Dalpe, Torrey Mitchell, Brian Flynn; Joel Armia, Johan Larsson, Nick Deslauriers; Matt Ellis, Tim Schaller, Patrick Kaleta.

“You look at …

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Phil Varone played nine NHL games last season. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Phil Varone’s nine-game run last season grabbed coach Ted Nolan’s attention. The 5-foot-10 forward played well during his first NHL recall, compiling one goal and two points while taking a regular shift.

But Varone, who will play in today’s preseason opener in Washington, couldn’t convert a slew of scoring opportunities he generated.

“The difference between him and (Martin) St. Louis and players of that caliber who’s a smaller structure, when they have an opportunity to put it, they put it …

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