Matt Moulson has missed four games. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Matt Moulson ready to return; Sabres will use weary goalie Tuesday

BUFFALO – Matt Moulson said he noticed “a weird thing” when he watched the Jan. 30 hit that has sidelined him four games. Phoenix’s Shane Doan just bumped the Sabres winger. But Moulson’s skate got caught and he fell down, and he elbowed himself in the rib.

“I originally thought I popped my own rib out,” Moulson said Friday inside the First Niagara Center after the Sabres’ first post-Olympic practice. “That wasn’t the case. Just a little bit of a cartilage thing in the ribs. So I’ve had it before.”

Moulson writhed in pain, but he quickly found out he wouldn’t be shelved long. He should return Tuesday when the Sabres resume their season against Carolina, a game rescheduled after a Jan. 7 snow postponement.

Defenseman Tyler Myers (lower body, two games) and forward Cody McCormick (hand, 24 games) will likely play Tuesday, interim Sabres coach Ted Nolan said.

“I’m back to normal,” Myers said.

The Sabres’ goaltending situation isn’t normal, however.

Starter Ryan Miller and backup Jhonas Enroth have medal games with Team USA and Sweden this weekend in Sochi. So the Sabres practiced about an hour Friday with two local netminders, Canisius College’s Adam Harris and Steele DeFazio, a former Junior Sabre who played at Queens University. Nolan played with DeFazio’s father, Dean, with Baltimore in 1985-86.

Miller or Enroth will play Tuesday.

“One of them is going to have to play, for sure,” Nolan said. “So we’ll see which one had the best sleep on the plane coming home.”

Notes: The Sabres also practiced without Swedish defenseman Henrik Tallinder. … Sabres captain Steve Ott on his Olympic break: “Just completely unwinded. It was completely outstanding, to be honest with you.” … Nolan on Friday’s session: “We just had a day to get our hands back and passing and our timing a little bit.”

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