There's a prime spot at left wing for the Sabres, and Alex Nylander was eager to prove he deserved it.
He'll have to wait.
Nylander suffered a lower-body injury during the Sabres' Prospects Challenge last week, and Buffalo coach Phil Housley said Friday that Nylander is "week-to-week." That's a downgrade from Monday when General Manager Jason Botterill seemed hopeful Nylander would be ready for the start of training camp.
"It's unfortunate," Housley said. "He'll be assessed. Guarding on the side of caution because it's so early in the season."
The Sabres selected Nylander with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2016 NHL Draft. He had two drawbacks during his rookie season last year – a lack of size and inconsistent play – but he entered the prospect tournament looking noticeably bigger. He played in just one game, then missed the final two because of the injury.
Center Sean Malone missed the entire Prospects Challenge because of injury, and he was absent when Buffalo took the ice for the first time Friday.
"That’s another week-to-week decision," Housley said in HarborCenter. "He's responding well now. He's starting to do exercises, so he's close to getting back on the ice."