TAMPA, Fla. – Evan Rodrigues knew when Jack Eichel got hurt, it meant more playing time for him. Rodrigues slid up to the second line and watched his minutes and role increase.
The Buffalo Sabres center is taking advantage.
Rodrigues has goals in two straight games, closing a solid February with the tying goal late in Wednesday's 2-1 overtime win in Tampa Bay. The center has four goals and nine points in the last 11 games.
"My confidence continues to grow day in and day out," he said. "I'm getting put in some good opportunities to succeed."
Rodrigues had just two goals and seven points in his opening 24 games. His season didn’t start until December because of a broken hand suffered during the preseason, but the third-year pro seems to be finding his way.
When Eichel went down with a high-ankle sprain Feb. 10, Rodrigues was averaging 12:51 of ice time per night. He's skating 16:22 in the last nine games. Rodrigues had nearly three minutes of power-play time against Tampa.
"I think everything is just starting to click," the 24-year-old said. "I'm just starting to get rolling and hopefully keep it going here."
Story topics: Evan Rodrigues