Nathan Gerbe skates this morning. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Gerbe not giving Sabres a reason to play him

BUFFALO – With slick Sabres winger Thomas Vanek too sore to play tonight against the Toronto Maple Leafs, either Nathan Gerbe or John Scott will return after being healthy scratches.

The two have three goals and six points combined, all from Gerbe. Vanek, of course, is the Sabres’ leading scorer with 14 goals and 31 points.

Scott, a hulking tough guy, will likely play after three straight scratches. The Leafs sport a lot of toughness.

Gerbe, a scratch last game, scored his three goals in a three-game stretch. He has zero scores in his last six games.

Was he benched because of his play or the Sabres’ glut of forwards?

“It was a situation where I think he’s working hard but we have to make some tough decisions right now in our lineup,” interim Sabres coach Ron Rolston said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “We can only have 12 forwards in there. He was a player that … didn’t give us a reason to keep him right now, and that’s what he has to work for.”

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