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Sabres injury update: Dylan Cozens OK after leaving practice, others still week to week
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Sabres injury update: Dylan Cozens OK after leaving practice, others still week to week

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Buffalo Sabres center Dylan Cozens (24) works the puck against Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly (44) during the first period at KeyBank Center, Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021. 

Center Dylan Cozens left the ice midway through Buffalo Sabres practice Monday in KeyBank Center and there did not appear to be any injury in drills. Coach Don Granato said afterward that Cozens will be fine and is expected to play in Tuesday night's game in Pittsburgh against the Penguins, but the Sabres called up forward Brett Murray from Rochester later Monday to have an extra forward on hand.

Good news has been hard to find of late among the Sabres' injured quartet. It's at least two weeks and counting for all four players and Granato said it's likely none of them are going to be back in the next couple of weeks. Here's the rundown:

Winger Victor Olofsson: Olofsson, who left the Nov. 1 practice in San Jose with what the team has termed a "soft-tissue" injury, has been able to skate but is still dealing with pain. Granato revealed the injury is "tedious" and is particularly troublesome when Olofsson shoots the puck, indicating the Sabres' top power-play specialist is probably dealing with an oblique issue.

"We've tried to get more data, more information through X-rays, MRIs, different scans to see if there's anything more in there and there's not," Granato said. "So the healing process is just way slower than anticipated. He's a shooter, we know he's a shooter, and this affects his shooting. He can do everything else. But when it comes to pulling the trigger, it's affecting him."

Goalie Craig Anderson: Anderson took a hard hit during the Nov. 2 loss to the Sharks and is believed to be dealing with head/neck issues. 

"They've done some different things treatment-wise," Granato said. "It doesn't appear that it would be a long-term thing, but these things are delicate, so it's another delicate injury."

Center Casey Mittelstadt: Shaken up while trying to ward off Montreal's Brendan Gallagher in the Oct. 14 season opener, the team's No. 1 center out of training camp has missed 12 games and counting with an upper body injury.

"Casey is continuing to progress, which is positive," Granato said. "And that might mean it's less than a couple of weeks, or around there if he continues to progress. The type of injury he has, we still need to see that progression."

Defenseman Henri Jokiharju: Jokiharju blocked a shot in the opener and has been seen around the arena in a walking boot. But the boot is now gone and Granato said Jokiharju is doing some light skating. 

"There should be no hiccups now. ... We're not going to rush him back till we feel those muscles around the injury are strong enough and he's not hurting it as a result of pulling the muscle around there," said Granato, who noted the team is watching for muscle atrophy in the area.

Out of the four injured players, Granato said Mittelstadt is the closest to returning.

"Based on his progression, if he continues that he would probably be back (first)," Granato said. "But again, you could wake up tomorrow and Victor's injury could be completely resolved. It's that close, but it's also that impeding to him shooting the puck."

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