BUFFALO – In the AHL, Seth Griffith morphs into a different player. Over the past three seasons, the Sabres winger has been one of the league’s most lethal scorers, compiling 47 goals and 155 points in 131 outings.
During Griffith’s early-season NHL run, he mustered only two goals and three points in 18 games. Then, not surprisingly, he went on a tear with the Rochester Americans, scoring 13 goals and 34 points in 36 contests.
“Some games I can handle the puck the entire game it feels like,” Griffith said of the AHL. “But my goal is to do stuff like that up here.”
Griffith, 25, said three months in the AHL boosted his confidence. He impressed the Sabres enough they recalled him again last week. He played two games, his first NHL appearances since late November, before getting scratched for Monday’s 5-3 win against Toronto.
Griffith, a restricted free agent following the season, will return tonight against the Calgary Flames inside KeyBank Center. How can he keep earning NHL action?
“When you get back up here, you worry about making a mistake and going back down,” he said this morning. “I think … you just got to focus on your game and be confident with the puck, especially now, everybody seems a lot looser now playing (than earlier in the season).
“It seems like guys are playing better, so I think you just got to have the mentality to know what your skill set is and just go out there and do it.”
Sabres coach Phil Housley said he wants Griffith to produce more offense.
“Just using his speed, quickness, trying to create offensively, cutbacks and trying to create his own space,” he said. “I think he did a really good job in the games that he’s played.”
The Sabres just recalled forward Danny O’Regan, although he will be scratched tonight. But the newcomer will likely play soon, meaning Griffith needs to impress Housley.
Griffith skated at left wing this morning beside center Benoit Pouliot and Nick Baptiste.