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Bogosian and Kulikov close to return for Sabres

Sunday morning, the Buffalo Sabres worked a long, hard practice, one that lasted nearly 90 minutes in KeyBank Center.

There is only one more scheduled practice before the team has to submit its final opening night roster on Tuesday afternoon. And spots continue to be in flux because of the preseason injury bug.

Still out of practice on Sunday were forwards Ryan O'Reilly (back), Kyle Okposo (bruised knee) and defensemen Zach Bogosian (groin) and Dmitry Kulikov (butt bruise).

"Kulikov and Bogosian skated today as did Ryan O’Reilly," Sabres coach Dan Bylsma said. "Some good progression on Bogosian and Kulikov. The rest has done Ryan well. Going to have rest for him tomorrow as well and see where he’s at come Tuesday for practice."

Bylsma said he expects Bogosian to practice on Tuesday. Kulkivo is possible for practice. O'Reilly is still questionable.

And then there's Okposo who hasn't skated yet after taking a slapshot off his knee at practice last week.

"Long term there’s not a concern," Bylsma said. "His progression back to the ice is not happening, it hasn’t happened quickly. The first few days were quite sore and quite stiff and hard to walk and the last three or four days have gotten better and better for him."

When asked about Okposo's availability for Thursday's season opener Bylsma said "it's uncertain at this point in time."

Marcus Foligno did practice. Bylsma said Foligno was under the weather.

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There were two shaky moments at Sunday's practice. Goaltender Robin Lehner appeared to take a high shot from Cody Franson that dropped him to the ice. He shouted loudly, skated around, changed his glove and continued with practice.

A few minutes later, Jack Eichel crashed the net in a drill and went face-first into the goal post. He also remained in practice.

Neither Lehner nor Eichel sustained an injury.

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The team is scheduled to be off on Monday returning to practices on Tuesday and Wednesday to prepare for Thursday's home opener against Montreal. The focus the last two practices will be special teams.

"Certainly aspects of our game we want to get into with that practice is a heavy dose of special teams," Bylsma said. "Hopefully we have a closer complement to a full special teams those days so you’ll see that in the next two practices getting ready for the start on Thursday."

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