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Sabres' Johnson heads to injury list before playing a game, could be done for year

OTTAWA – It didn’t take Chad Johnson long to learn what it means to be a member of the 2014-15 Buffalo Sabres. Next time he’s in the crease, he might be a member of the 2015-16 Sabres.

The goaltender, scheduled to make his Sabres debut Friday, suffered a lower-body injury just hours before a 3-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators. Johnson took part in the morning skate in Canadian Tire Centre and got hurt just before it ended.

“Chad, unfortunately, hurt something lower body and he’ll be out for a while,” coach Ted Nolan said. “Not day-to-day, it’ll be for a while.”

Johnson, acquired from the New York Islanders on Monday, was eager to show his new organization it can count on him. The first impression will have to wait. With only five weeks left in the season, “a while” could be the remaining 17 games.

“It possibly could be,” Nolan said. “We’ll get our doctors to look at him, and we’ll see what happens.”

Anders Lindback, who played his first game for the Sabres on Tuesday, started in Johnson’s place. He made 34 saves and said he’s ready to play Saturday in Washington.

“I've been working toward this for a long time,” Lindback said. “I'll be ready to go again.”

The Sabres recalled Andrey Makarov from Rochester to serve as the backup against the Senators. The 21-year-old joined the Sabres for the third time in his career. He has yet to appear in a game. The goalie is 14-14-3 with a .899 save percentage and 3.04 goals-against average with the Amerks this season.

Nolan wasn’t sure if the Sabres would keep Makarov or send him back to Rochester and bring Matt Hackett to Buffalo.

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