The Sabres will go with Ullmark against Los Angeles

Carter Hutton is ready to be the backup

Paul Hamilton
December 11, 2018 - 12:51 pm

Photo: Timothy T. Ludwig - USA TODAY Sports

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Buffalo, NY (WGR 550) - Carter Hutton is good enough to dress as Linus Ullmark’s backup so Scott Wedgewood has been sent back to Rochester. Ullmark goes between the pipes on Tuesday and Housley said, “Hutton had a good day yesterday and I just wanted to get him in one more practice before he plays.”

Ullmark is 5-1-3 with a 3.04 goals-against and .913 save percentage. He’s played three of the last four games going 0-1-2 with a 4.17 goals-against and .886 save percentage.

Only a few guys took part in the morning skate, but Marco Scandella was one of them. It was his first time back on the ice with teammates. He said, “It felt good, great to be back with the boys competing. It’s never fun being out, but I just can’t wait to get back because I’m on the right track.”

Housley added, “He’s progressing well, but all of our guys that have been rehabbing have touched the ice, so that’s a good sign.”

I asked Scandella if he might be back this week. He said with a laugh, "I don’t know, we’ll see, but it was a good sign today, it was a step in the right direction even though we weren’t out there with most of the guys, I’ll get back on the ice tomorrow with the team and see how it goes.”

Scandella was sent home from the road trip before Nashville and Phil Housley has said the injury turned out to be worse than first thought. The defenseman said, “I was trying to play it off like it wasn’t that bad and we got to the point where it wasn’t getting any better and it was getting worse, so we examined it and we made the right decision and take our time with it.”

There is one thing that Scandella wanted to set straight about the injury. “I heard there was a rumor going around that I had vertigo and that’s false, I just wanted to clear that up.”

Matt Hunwick has progressed to the point where he can play games, but to start with it won’t be in Buffalo. Housley said, “We’re going to assign him to Rochester today with the hopes that he’s going to play tomorrow in Rochester, so he’s in a good place and we just need to get him some action.”

Housley said Hunwick would possibly play Friday in Rochester too.

Patrik Berglund is sick so Zemgus Girgensons will play for him. Remi Elie is the other healthy scratch.

Buffalo has lost five straight games, going 0-3-2, but the team has picked up points in 18 out of 23 games. That’s a point percentage of .696. Overall, the Sabres are eighth in the NHL with a points percentage of .633

In the last four games, the Sabres have gotten four goals from Jack Eichel, three goals from Sam Reinhart and one from Jeff Skinner.

Eichel is tied with Alex Ovechkin and Claude Giroux for ninth in league scoring with 36 points in 30 games. Skinner is fourth in league goal scoring with 20. Skinner has just one goal in his last five games.

Los Angeles and Chicago are tied for last in the NHL with a points percentage of .371. The Kings come into Tuesday with one win in four games and two wins in seven. Los Angeles lost in Detroit on Monday night, 3-1.

Jonathan Quick has been in net for five straight games and six out of seven. In those five games, he’s gone 2-3-0 with a 2.25 goals-against and .921 save percentage. Overall, it has not been a good season for Quick as he’s 2-7-2 with a 3.22 goals-against and .890 save percentage.

Cal Petersen was drafted by the Sabres, but he decided he did not want to sign in Buffalo and went the college free agent route to ink a deal with the Kings. In nine games this season, the rookie is 4-4-0 with a 2.41 goals-against and .929 save percentage.

The Kings are, by far, the worst scoring team in the National Hockey League, averaging just 2.16 goals per-game. Anze Kopitar leads them in scoring with just 19 points in 30 games.

Join Schopp and the Bulldog for the pre-game starting at 6:00 live from (716) Food and Sport when they’ll be joined by Phil Housley, Zach Bogosian and Jason Pominville.

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