The Sabres' prospects jumped all over New Jersey during their debut Saturday night, building a 2-0 lead in the opening minutes and a 5-0 advantage midway through the game. It allowed coach Randy Cunneyworth to achieve his primary goal.
He rolled four forward lines and gave all the players a chance to show what they can do.
"The reason for this is to give guys opportunities," Cunneyworth said Sunday after practice in First Niagara Center. "Hopefully, I’m able to put them in all the right situations. Sometimes you put them in situations where they have to really come through. That’s kind of the goal, to see them in certain situations that they wouldn’t normally be comfortable with. They have to actually handle them and do a good job.
"It’s a great test, a great opportunity to showcase their talents."
Buffalo will get another chance Monday night when it hosts Boston's prospects at 7 p.m. in the arena. Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart are expected to play, while defenseman Jake McCabe and forward William Carrier will dress after sitting against the Devils.
Carrier, a second-year-pro acquired from St. Louis in the Ryan Miller trade, practiced with Reinhart and Justin Bailey.
"He's in really good shape," Cunneyworth said. "He had a good summer of training, and that's going to give him a jump on the competition. He's going to be in a position where he can go down that wing and be that power forward, drive that puck to the net, finish a couple of plays."