BUFFALO – Sabres winger Kyle Okposo, out since suffering a concussion last Friday, skated this morning, coach Phil Housley said.
“That’s a great sign,” Housley said inside KeyBank Center. “He’s got a smile on his face. So those are all good signs for us.”
Okposo, 30, has a concerning history of concussions. The veteran hasn’t played since suffering another one fighting New York Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo.
Housley believes Okposo will play again this season.
“I would imagine, but we’re not putting any timetable with that,” Housley said.
“Danny’s been doing a great job down there with the line of (Rasmus) Asplund and (Victor) Olofsson, he’s been making a lot of solid plays,” Housley said. “Willie’s just that type of guy we need right now. He’s physical, he’s fast.”
Housley said the Sabres have some banged-up forwards, so the rest of the lineup will be decided after warm-ups.
Update: Casey Mittelstadt is out today. An upper-body injury recently sidelined the rookie center two games. Winger C.J. Smith is also out.
New Update: Mittelstadt is sick. Smith, meanwhile, has been sent back to Rochester. We’ll see if the Sabres call him right back up since 36-goal winger Jeff Skinner left with an apparent ankle injury in the second period.
The Sabres also sent defenseman Lawrence Pilut back to the AHL on Friday.
“Lawrence’s development is right where it should be,” Housley said. “He’s played a lot of good hockey for us. He’s played 25 games to this point. I think his play has slipped. Just get him back down to Rochester and have him play some more meaningful minutes.”
Goalie Carter Hutton, who made 39 saves in Thursday’s 2-1 shootout loss in Tampa Bay, will start again.
“He played exceptional, especially in overtime,” Housley said.
Housley said goalie Linus Ullmark, who missed Thursday’s start because of a lower-body injury, is well enough to back up.