Sabres' Montour gets his first practice with his new team

Carter Hutton left practice early for precautionary reasons

Paul Hamilton
February 28, 2019 - 3:08 pm

Photo: Matt Slocum - Associated Press


Buffalo, NY (WGR 550) - Sabres goaltender Carter Hutton left practice on Thursday. He didn’t return and Phil Housley said, “Hutton tweaked something in his lower body, so we were being precautionary with it. He'll be evaluated more on Thursday and Friday morning.” Ryan Vinz quickly put the equipment on and finished practice.

Vladimir Sobotka and Marco Scandella also missed practice. Sobotka has an upper-body injury after getting hit in the head during the Flyers game, while Scandella has a lower-body injury. He was seen heading into the X-Ray room after the Philadelphia game. Both are day-to-day and neither has been ruled out for Friday.

Brandon Montour participated in his first practice with his new team. The kid spent his first two days with the Sabres basically functioning on no sleep. He had Wednesday off and now he’s getting back to normal, “I got a little bit of sleep, the day off was nice. I got a rental car, went to the mall and got a few things for the winter.

“My girlfriend is coming tonight, so she got to my place and picked some extra stuff up for me, so I’m a little bit more prepared.”

Phil Housley got to see his new defenseman in a game before a practice. He said, “I just really like his attitude. He’s got a smile on his face, he loves coming to the rink, he enjoys playing the game.

“I just love the speed element to his game, he attacks the game really well, he wants to make a difference out there, so it’s good to have him in a practice.”

This is the first time Montour has been traded. He said, “It’s the new faces, a new coaching staff. This was my first time in the new dressing room here, so seeing where things are, trying to feel it out and get into a routine.”

Housley coaches a different system than Randy Carlyle did in Anaheim. Housley said Montour will go through a learning curve, “We play a fast game, but it’s going to take some time and it’s going to take a couple of games to really get acclimated and we haven’t had a lot of quality practice time, so it’s a day-by-day, game-by-game, practice-by-practice situation.”

Rasmus Dahlin is going through things in the NHL that he’s never experienced before. The season is getting longer for the 18-year-old and he may be pressing. I’ve seen a dip in his game and Housley said, “Its tough, the 82 game grind of a schedule with travel and we just finished seven games in 12 nights, that’s something that he has to manage.

“I think for me, he’s trying to make a difference. His intentions are in the right area, he just has to take what the game gives him. He tries to attack and tries to make a difference, but you can’t do that every shift. He’s still making good plays, it’s just those times of his defensive awareness and just having a sense of danger that something wrong could happen that he has to be more on a high alert.”


Thursday’s lines:

Skinner - Eichel - Reinhart

Sheary - Rodrigues - Okposo

Girgensons - Larsson - Pominville

Wilson - Mittelstadt - Thompson


McCabe - Ristolainen

Dahlin - Bogosian

Hunwick - Montour


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