Robin Lehner will be back in goal for the Buffalo Sabres.
Though he was pulled in the second period Tuesday after letting in three goals on 14 shots in the 4-2 loss to the New York Rangers, coach Dan Bylsma liked what he saw on the ice at practice on Wednesday morning.
“I thought he was attentive and sharp and eager to get back in net and he will for us tomorrow night,” Bylsma said, thereby naming Lehner the Sabres starter for Thursday’s game against the Montreal Canadiens in Bell Centre.
The rest of the lineup remained the same in Wednesday’s practice with injured players Cody Franson (neck) and Ryan O’Reilly (lower body) taking the scene in from the bench.
“Hopefully Cody is progressing,” Bylsma said. “We’d like to see him get out on the ice, not with the team, hopefully soon. He’s not going on the trip with us.
“Ryan, his three-week period from his injury will be Friday. That will be another point in his progression to see when he gets to that point. He’s starting to show up in meetings and we see him on the bench in practice, he’s even chirping the coaches’ skills a little bit in practice today. He’s trying to get as close as he can to the ice right now.
The Sabres thought they should have earned an offensive-zone faceoff late in Tuesday’s game after the Rangers iced the puck. Only they weren’t called for icing. The linesmen said the puck had been tipped, costing the Sabres time and an opportunity to set up a play trailing, at the time, 3-2.
“I didn’t see it. … From what we know it didn’t hit but you know linesmen make the calls all night long,” Bylsma said. “Whether it did or did not, it’s disappointing. I didn’t know why it wasn’t an icing when he didn’t blow the whistle. He said it got tipped. That’s the call he made. That’s not the reason why we lost the game.”