The Amerks are in Buffalo on Wednesday

The Sabres made room by moving practice to HarborCenter

Paul Hamilton
November 07, 2018 - 2:39 pm

Photo: Micheline Michaelina - Rochester Americans


Buffalo, NY (WGR 550) - The Amerks come into Buffalo leading the North Division of the AHL by two points over their opponent on Wednesday, the Cleveland Monsters.

Chris Taylor’s boys are 8-3-1 this season and the head coach joined The Instigators on Wednesday. The team lost its first two games, which shows how well they’re doing now. Taylor said, “We just care about winning and whoever is getting the points, that’s just a reflection of our team.”

Taylor has three of the top-seven leading scorers in the AHL with Zach Redmond, Victor Olofsson and Lawrence Pilut. Two of those players are defensemen and Taylor said, “The biggest thing is our defensemen are joining the rush and we love that. It’s a huge advantage for any team if you get D that are mobile like ours that can create offensively.”

One player you won’t see on the scoresheet very often is Will Borgen. Borgen was a horse at St. Cloud State, so it’s no surprise that he’s doing well in Rochester, “Will Borgen is playing unbelievable, has he surprised me? Absolutely," Taylor said. “He’s surprised me in how far his development has come in a short time. He’s hard to play against, he has a good defensive style, he’s always on the PK playing the hard minutes, so you don’t have to put up points to be that guy who’s developing.”

Alex Nylander had a very good training camp and maybe should’ve made the team. Taylor said Nylander is not pouting just because he got sent down, “Alex had a great start, he’s playing well, he’s getting more involved in the play, he’s shooting pucks quicker which is nice and he’s got a lot more confidence because of the work ethic he’s put in since the start of the year.”

Many thought Brendan Guhle was going to be a regular for the Sabres this year, but he didn’t have a good preseason. Taylor said, “Guhle has done a remarkable job with his penalty killing, he’s added some offense too, he’s got good numbers, he’s good defensively, so he’s working on both ends of his game.”

Rasmus Asplund is projected to be an excellent two-way player in professional hockey. He was just that in the SHL and Taylor said the Swede has half of the equation down, “I really like Asplund, he doesn’t get recognition because he’s only got one assist in 12 games, but he’s really heady, he makes a lot of things happen, he’s on the ice for a lot of goals for, he’s not a big guy, but he knows how to use his body.”

In 11 games, Justin Bailey has no goals and three assists and was a healthy scratch in Game 2 of the season Taylor said, “He didn’t play well in a couple of games, but he’s had a lot of chances, he’s had probably eight to 10 breakaways this year, he just hasn’t found the net, but he’s also doing a great job penalty killing, so points are going to come for him, I’m not worried about him, he’s working hard in practice and he’s continuing to work at it.”

Because of the AHL game, the Sabres practiced at HarborCenter before leaving for Montreal. Phil Housley said Nate Beaulieu will return to the lineup on Thursday against the Habs. He’s been practicing in Casey Nelson’s spot.


Wednesday’s lines:

Skinner - Eichel - Pominville

Sheary - Mittelstadt - Okposo

Rodrigues - Sobotka - Reinhart

Berglund - Larsson - Girgensons



McCabe - Ristolainen

Scandella - Bogosian

Beaulieu - Dahlin

Elie - Nelson

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