This shortened NHL season has gotten even shorter for Buffalo Sabres defenseman Alexander Sulzer, as coach Ron Rolston announced on Thursday, March 14 that Sulzer had underwent surgery to a repair a torn ACL and will miss the remainder of the season.
Sulzer has missed the last eight games since suffering the injury in a 4-0 loss to the New York Islanders back on Feb. 23. Doctors were unable to properly diagnose the injury until the swelling subsided.
In 17 games this season, Sulzer has 3 goals and an assist for four points, to go along with 10 penalty minutes and a plus-3 rating.
Sulzer was acquired from Vancouver back on Feb. 27, 2012 along with Cody Hodgson in exchange Marc-Andre Gragnani and Zack Kassian. Sulzer played 15 games for the Sabres last season following the trade, compiling three goals and five assists for eight points and was rated a plus-2. His surprisingly solid play following the trade led the Sabres to ink him to a one-year contract extension following the season.
Tyler Ennis missed the Sabres last game against the New York Rangers on Tuesday after taking a nasty hit into the boards from Philadelphia Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds on Sunday. Ennis has seven goals and 11 assists for 18 points in 26 games this season.
Ville Leino is also set to return to the Sabres lineup on Saturday, after missing the first 27 games with an ailing hip problem that he suffered just a couple days before the season started on Jan. 20.
In an underwhelming first year after signing a six-year $27 million contract with the Sabres, Leino only amassed eight goals and 17 assists for 25 points in 71 games last season.
After missing more than the first half of this season, Leino will finally get a chance to prove that last season was just a fluke, and that he can return to the level of play that earned him that contract, scoring 19 goals and adding 34 assists for 53 points in 81 games with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010-2011.