Casey Fitzgerald could earn a recall this season. ©2021, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres trim roster by three players, get closer to regular-season lineup

The Buffalo Sabres trimmed their roster again today, waiving winger Axel Jonsson-Fjallby and sending defenseman Casey Fitzgerald and forward Brandon Biro to the Rochester Americans.

They now have 24 healthy players – 15 forwards, seven defensemen and two goalies – on the roster. They must finalize their 23-man roster for Thursday’s season opener by 5 p.m. Monday.

To reach that number, the Sabres will likely reassign another forward.

Jonsson-Fjallby, 23, skated in the pregame warm-up prior to Saturday’s 3-1 preseason win over the Detroit Red Wings at KeyBank Center but couldn’t play because of a visa issue.

Someone claimed on waivers – they snagged the Swede from the Washington Capitals on Monday – must reapply for his visa, according to the Sabres. Traded players don’t have to reapply.

The Sabres were also hopeful Jonsson-Fjallby would play in Tuesday’s exhibition contest.

The Capitals would have first dibs to reclaim Jonsson-Fjallby.

John Hayden replaced Jonsson-Fjallby in the lineup for Saturday’s preseason finale.

Fitzgerald, 24, impressed Sabres coach Don Granato during training camp, earning a long look. Before the prospect was injured last season with the Amerks, he was close to earning his first recall.

“He was a guy we talked about last year,” Granato said Friday. “He was injured late in the year. (He) had a chance to be a call-up at that point because he was performing very well. … He’s done really well.

“So knowing that he was that close to a callup last year, probability of him being a callup this year has helped him stay by virtue of him doing what he should.”

Fitzgerald played in the Amerks’ 5-2 preseason win over the Syracuse Crunch on Sunday afternoon, recording an assist. The Times Herald reported Saturday that Fitzgerald must clear waivers to join Rochester. He is waivers exempt.

Biro, 23, missed camp with an undisclosed injury.

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