BUFFALO – Get ready to see another defenseman play for the Sabres. With Zach Bogosian and Andrej Meszaros injured, the club will likely recall Chad Ruhwedel from Rochester for tonight’s tilt against the Washington Capitals, coach Ted Nolan said.
The 24-year-old Ruhwedel would be the 11th defenseman to dress for the Sabres this year.
Update: The Sabres have officially recalled Ruhwedel.
Bogosian’s lower-body injury hasn’t improved, Nolan said. Meanwhile, Meszaros, who hurt his hand blocking a shot March 7, banged another part of his hand. Both are being sent for evaluations and could miss a few games, Nolan said. Bogosian has already missed one game.
Ruhwedel has one assist in 28 NHL games. He hasn’t played with the Sabres since suffering a concussion April 6 in Philadelphia.
“He can skate,” Nolan said this morning inside the First Niagara Center. “He can get by quick and make that first pass. I think sometimes when you get here last time like he did, you want to do too much.”
Ruhwedel has eight goals and 31 points in 59 AHL games this season, both highs for Americans defensemen.
In other news, Sabres goalie Anders Lindback will make his third straight start tonight. Nolan said goalie Matt Hackett will likely start Tuesday in Boston, where he tore up his knee April 12.
Lindback has been playing well, although the Sabres, losers of six straight games, have offered little goal support. They have only six goals in the five games since trading Brian Flynn, Torrey Mitchell and Chris Stewart, three of their top forwards.
“With those guys in the lineup … we had lines set for a long time and we had familiarity,” Sabres captain Brian Gionta said. “Since that you’ve had to shuffle around.”
Some power play goals would help. The Sabres’ power play is zero of the last 14 in the past seven games and one of the last 29 in the past 12 contests.
“In these close games, that’s what could win us games,” Gionta said.
The Sabres’ last meeting with the Capitals wasn’t close. They got pummeled 6-1 on March 7 in Washington.
“They got us on a weak moment,” Nolan said. “We were very fatigued. We got in at 3:30 in the morning (coming from Ottawa). We just didn’t have any energy whatsoever, and one thing about our team, we have to play with energy, or there’s going to be nights like that.”
The Capitals beat Boston 2-0 Sunday in Washington.
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