BUFFALO – On an anemic team about to break its own dubious record for fewest goals scored in modern NHL history, slick Sabres winger Tyler Ennis has 18 goals.
The 25-year-old scored 21 times last season, when the Sabres scored only 150 goals. They have 126 goals through 70 games this season, a pathetic 148-score pace.
Through all the turmoil, through all the losses, Ennis has remained a consistent offensive threat with neophytes feeding him the puck.
“Somebody asked me who’s the most consistent player on this team and who’s the most valuable player on the team this year? Tyler Ennis by far,” Sabres coach Ted Nolan said this morning. “His vision, his dynamic, his intuition with the puck. He darts in and out. He’s competitive.
“Scoring 18 goals now – no knock against the centermen they had – but you give him a legitimate, experienced center ice man to feed him some pucks, the sky is the limit for this kid. You look at 18, you can look at 38, 40. The sky’s the limit, I really believe.”
The Sabres will make one lineup change tonight against the New Jersey Devils, inserting defenseman Andrej Meszaros (hand, two games) for Chad Ruhwedel, who was up on an emergency recall. The Sabres planned to discuss Ruhwedel’s status. Rochester plays in Utica tonight.
As expected, Sabres goalie Anders Lindback will start his fifth straight game.